Former President Jerry John Rawlings on Sunday broke his long silence over claims that a vote for Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) presidential candidate, was a vote for Rawlings.
“It is foolish talk that the NPP is going round propagating that I will control Mills and kill him if Ghanaians vote for Mills, and give power to my wife”, he said.
Speaking to an emotionally charged crowd of NDC supporters and sympathizers at Victoria Park in Cape Coast, on Sunday, after keep-fit exercise, Rawlings took his time to explain to the understanding of the huge crowd that if he was interested in staying in power, he would have manipulated the constitution to enable him run for another term or more in 2000.
He went on to say that if he wanted to be President again, he would not have handed over power to President Kufuor for them to go round to say he will kill Mills when Ghanaians vote for him.
Rawlings said NPP was using poisonous propaganda against Mills and that in 2004 they picked an old woman and pretended that she was the mother of Mills, who went round to appeal to people not vote for her supposed son because Rawlings had plans to kill him and continue to rule.
“This is absolute nonsense,” he said, explaining that NPP members were aware that Mills lost the mother long ago, but yet went round to preach falsehood against the clean man.
According to Rawlings, information filtering into his office indicated that NPP has started that bad propaganda again, claiming that if they vote for Mills in 2008, Rawlings will kill him and rule the country again.
The furious looking former military leader, charged the people of Central Region to discard the propaganda and hoot at those who go round perpetrating such falsehoods.
Rawlings told the crowd that it was God's will that Senator Barrack Obama won the US election and that will prevail in Ghana too, but warned the NDC supporters to be vigilant on December 7 because if it were to be Ghana, Obama would not have won the US elections.
This, he said, was because the ruling NPP would have rigged the elections, adding that in America the citizens have the capacity to control the electoral system from any manipulation.
Rawlings stuck his neck out when he authoritatively told the thick crowd “NPP rigged the 2004 elections and bribed judges to rule in President Kufuor's favour when the case went to court, because Kufuor knew that he was going to be forced out of office if true judgment was delivered.
He said the judges were corrupt and could not give any better judgment when it was clear after forensic test of some ballot papers that one person voted more than 100 times with the same thumb print.
He assured the crowd that Prof. Mills will win the 2008 elections, therefore they should not relax yet, but be vigilant and follow the ballot papers from the polling stations to the collation centres at the Electoral Commission offices.
He said Ghanaians and for that matter, NDC supporters should not to be afraid of the television campaigns being mounted by the NPP saying that NPP was not on the ground.
Enoch Tei Mensah, MP for Ningo Prampram, also advised the people to discard the notion that Rawlings will control Mills when voted into power, describing it as absurd on the part of the ruling party.
He said he got information that NPP has started their dirty politics against Mills in the region again and urged supporters to work hard to diffuse such vile propaganda.
Lawyer Ebo Barton Odro, Cape Coast Constituency NDC parliamentary candidate, also explained that Prof. Mills' presentation at his father's funeral of a donation to the Heart Foundation at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital was a gesture to promote access to heart care, which is very expensive to finance.
He said part of the money was sent to the Central Regional Hospital (Interruption) and therefore charged residents in the region to discard NPP propaganda that Mills sent all the funeral donations to Accra.
Adams Kofi, special aide to Rawlings, told the people that when they get the ballot paper, they should check for the validation stamp and reject tainted or unstamped ballot papers.
Rawlings later met with the Duakor community on the Takoradi-Cape Coast highway, and also met Cape Coast Polytechnic students.