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Rawlings fit and vibrant in old age – Akofa Segbefia

rawlings-familyAn ally of former President Jerry John Rawlings says an attempt by the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) to relegate the former Ghanaian leader to the background on grounds of old age would be disastrous.

Dr Akofa Segbefia says Mr Rawlings has wide appeal among sections of Ghanaians and could prove useful should he be consulted ahead of the December 2016 polls.

Speaking to Dzifa Bampoh, host of Joy FM’s Newsnite programme Tuesday, the communication expert said, “Jerry [Rawlings] is one person who cannot be put in the background.”

The General Secretary of NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, had told Joy News’ Evans Mensah at an exclusive interview aired Tuesday on JOYNEWS’ The Pulse programme, that former President Rawlings would not be playing a key role in the party’s 2016 campaign because of old age.

He said the founder of the NDC had toiled for both the party and country and deserves some respite after this labour.

“We have benefited from the toil of this man so at this age he needs to rest for those he trained to do the work,” he added.

“If Jerry is your father would you pull him to campaign at this age?” he asked, adding the party would invite him to areas his support would be needed.

But the Communication expert who had served in the capacity of an assistant to a former Chief of Staff has disagreed with the NDC functionary.

Dr Segbefia says the old age argument of Mr Nketia is unsustainable considering that the flagbearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo is older than the former Ghanaian leader.

Nana Akufo-Addo is 72 years while Mr Rawlings is 69.

He says what should be of concern to functionaries of the NDC is how Mr Rawlings would respond should he be contacted and where his allegiance lies because of the former First Lady’s party the National Democratic Party (NDP).

“He is the founder [of NDC], the daughter is contesting a parliamentary seat [on the ticket of NDC] and the wife is a founder of a party [NDP] so the thread of allegiance could be should be of concern,” he said.

“I do not know but if he has been contacted I think people will speak to the issue else any form of argument will only be conjecturing,” he added.

Notwithstanding, the journalism lecturer at the Trans Africa University College says he has the feeling that Mr Rawlings will show up to help the NDC 2016 campaign.

“I could be proven wrong but he is likely to mount a campaign for the NDC,” he added.

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