The National Democratic Congress (NDC) founder is said to have died in the early hours of Thursday, November 12, 2020 at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital.
On this sad and solemn occasion, we recount his years as the head of state both as a military leader and a civilian president.
First coup in 1979
Flt. Lt Rawlings burst unto the scene as part of a group of military men who seized power form General Akufo on June 4th, 1979.
Shortly afterwards, Rawlings established and became the Chairman of a 15 member Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC), primarily composed of junior officers.
Handover to a civilian government
On 24th September 1979, the AFRC handed over to the civilian Government of the People's National Party (PNP) under President Hilla Limann.
Second coup in 1981
Two years later Rawlings ousted President Hilla Limann in a coup d'etat on 31 December 1981, claiming that civilian rule was weak and the country's economy was deteriorating.
He ruled as miliraty dictator from 1981 till he agreed to reverse to democratic rule with the drafting of the 1992 constitution.
Jerry Ralwings led the newly formed National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the 1992 elections to defeat Professor Albert Adu-Boahen of the New Patriotic Party (NPP). The NDC also won majority of seats in parliament due to the boycott of the parliamentary elections by the NPP.
Rawlings took office on 7 January 1993, the same day that the new constitution came into effect, and the government became known as the Fourth Republic of Ghana.
Re-election in 1996
The two major contenders of the 1996 election were Rawlings' NDC, and John Kufuor's Great Alliance, an amalgamation of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the People's Convention Party (PCP).
The Electoral Commission reported that Rawlings had won by 57%, with Kufuor obtaining 40% of the vote.
The NDC took 134 seats in the Assembly compared to the opposition's 66, and the NPP took 60 seats in the parliament.
2000 handing over
After serving his second term, President Rawlings handed over power to John Agyekum Kufour and the New Patriotic Party in 2001 after he defeated the NDC in the 2000 elections.