Prof. Kwamema Ahwoi has denied speculations that Jerry Rawlings beat up his vice-president late Kow Nkensen Arkaah at the presidency.
Over the years there has been speculations that Arkaah was assaulted by Rawlings which the former has also spoken off before.
Mr Ahwoi says he was present at the time of the incident and Rawlings never beat up Arkaah and tore his coat as it was reported.
“Both Rawlings and Arkaah got into a bit of physical contact and they both fell to the grounds they got into a little scuffle but were separated. Arkaah’s coat was not torn when he left the presidency but he wanted the IGP to arrest Rawlings for assault so he might have intentionally torn his coat.”
Arkaah years back recounting the incident said “Rawlings gave me a terrible blow on the shoulder, which sent me falling to the floor,” (now late) told journalists at a news conference hours after the December 28, 1995, presidential fisticuff between him and the former military leader.
“He [Rawlings] then attempted to pull me up by my shoulder in order to hit me further. He tore the shoulder of my jacket in the process.”
Arkaah then leader of the National Convention Party (NCP), went into an alliance with Mr Rawlings’ newly-found National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Every Ghanaian Living Everywhere (EGLE) party, ahead of the country’s first democratic elections in 1992.
As part of the deal, Arkaah became the Vice-Presidential candidate on Rawlings’ ticket. Rawlings and Arkaah had a difficult working relationship throughout their four-year term.
Prior to the brawl, the opposition coalition co-leader had been quoted in the press as saying Cabinet meetings “had become the forum for corrupt and unscrupulous plans.”
Mr Arkaah, who insisted Mr Rawlings “savaged” him, said: “In his frustration, he kicked me a couple of times in the groin before members present were able to restrain him.”
He became Vice-President of Ghana from 1993 to 1997.
He crossed divides to join forces with other opposition parties to fight the incumbent government in the next elections.
Arkaah became the leader of the Convention People’s Party formed by the merger of the NCP and the People’s Convention Party. The merger was announced on 29 January 1996.
Arkaah, who continued as Vice-President of Ghana, stood as a candidate in the 1996 presidential elections and lost. He was replaced in the Rawlings government by Professor John Atta Mills, a law lecturer, as Rawlings’ deputy.