Former President John Dramani Mahama has signed the book of condolence opened at the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) in honour of former president Jerry John Rawlings.
There was controversy last Friday when the current leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) visited the widow of Mr Rawlings, Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings, and wanted to sign the book of condolence.
“We were at the residence of the family to offer our condolences,” General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketia told journalists.
“The maternal family from Anlo was represented, the nuclear family as well. We were led by our flagbearer. Upon arrival, we were informed that the book of condolence had been taken to the [Accra International] Conference Centre, so we should go there.
“By the time we reached there, the state officials had locked up the [Accra] International Conference Centre, taking the book away.”
He continued: “When we enquired, we were told that they had been directed to prevent Mr Mahama from signing.”
But a release dated November 13, 2020, from the State Protocol Department, said the signing of the book of condolence will begin from Monday, November 16 to Friday, November 20 at the foyer of the Centre.
Indeed, on Monday, Mr Mahama was at the Centre with his wife, Lordina, to sign the book.
He had already signed one opened at the Adabraka office of the NDC.
Former President John Kufuor is also expected to sign the book on Monday.
Former First and Second Ladies will follow the two former presidents and then the Chief of Staff will sign hers. The day will close with all presidential aspirants and other political leaders.
Son of late president John Evans Atta Mills also signed on behalf of the Mills’s.
Tuesday, November 17 will see the Inspector General of Police (IGP), the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) and other heads of security agencies signing the book with heads of religious bodies as well as ambassadors and high commissioners following.
Wednesday, November 18 will have retired senior security officers, old students of Mr and Mrs Rawlings’s alma mater Achimota School and traditional leaders signing the book.
Heads of government institutions will take their turn on Thursday with the public following. Members of the public will continue on Friday, November 20.
There will be no one-week celebration as the family is yet to decide on a date for the final funeral rites.