Former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo has been in Accra since last weekend for a symbolic visit while regretting not having had the opportunity to express his gratitude to former President of Ghana Jerry John Rawlings, before his death.
President Gbagbo who met Ghana’s former first lady Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings and her family said the news of President Rawlings passing came as a real shock to him as they were close friends.
“President Rawlings was the strongest of us… so it was hard to believe he was deceased. He was very genuine and real, ”Mr. Gbagbo said.
The former Ivorian leader said he was keenly aware of the strong support President Rawlings gave him and how he spoke passionately about the error of his incarceration while others conveniently kept the silence.
Gbagbo, who returned to Côte d’Ivoire in June after being imprisoned for ten years by the International Criminal Court (ICC), said shortly after his return that he yearned for an opportunity to come and sympathize with the Rawlings family and that he ‘he was finally relieved to have fulfilled this mission.
The former leader also visited President Rawlings’ grave on Saturday where he laid a wreath in honor of his late colleague.
This visit, warmly welcomed by the Rawlings family, allowed the latter to make revelations on the way in which J.J. Rawlings was indignant at the “injustice” which had happened to Laurent Gbagbo.