Leaders in every sphere or jurisdiction usually earn certain names and descriptions from their followers depending on the characteristics they exhibit or events which happened during their tenure.
The names, which are usually funny or ridiculous, tend to stick and are often remembered long after they are out of power.
Throughout the years and governments, several nicknames have been given to Ghana’s presidents under the 4th Republic.
Check out a list of some of the popular nicknames of presidents since the beginning of the 4th Republic, compiled by ghanaweb.
Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings – Dr. Boom, Papa J
Hate him or love him, former President J.J. Rawlings always draws the attention of the Ghanaian populace whenever he makes a remark about an issue. His stance and ferocity in addressing matters concerning the country earned him the nickname Dr Boom.
Another name which the former military leader has come to be known by is Papa J. The name which was acquired long after his tenure became an informal way to address him to appeal to his humour side.
John Agyekum Kufuor – Gentle giant, sexy eyes
Pegged at 6 foot 3, the second resident of the 4th Republic, John Agyekum Kufuor was given the name ‘Gentle Giant’ due to his stature and calm countenance.
Ghanaians were particularly fond of him because despite his cool disposition he was able to carry out his mandate and commanded the respect of his appointees and opposition members alike.
Mr Kufuor was once voted as one of the sexiest men due to his sleepy-like looking eyes. Many admirers, majority of them women teased that the former president possessed eyes which could disarm any member of the opposite sex.
He was thus described as the president with ‘sexy eyes.’
John Evans Atta Mills – Asomdwehene, ‘Ecomini’, Do little
The late former President
Evans Atta Mills was known to proffer amicable solutions to every problem and
situation thrown at him.
Prof. Mills would relentlessly preach peace every time he got the platform and always included them in his presidential speeches.
He was, thus, named ‘Asomdwehene’, to wit, ‘king of peace’. Although the title undeniably belongs to God, Ghanaians would dare attribute it to the late president damning consequences.
Trust Ghanaians to crucify high profiled personalities who goof one way or another. During one of his State of the Nation Addresses, Prof. Atta Mills suffered a brief stint of spoonerism; an error in speech in which corresponding consonants, vowels, or morphemes are switched between two words in a phrase.
The then-president, in his bid to pronounce economy, managed to mouth ‘ecomini’ instead. The error was met with an uproar in the public domain and became a tagline wherever his name is mentioned.
Ghanaians began to call president Mills ‘Do little’ after the then-candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo described the president as such for carrying out campaign promises at a snail’s pace.
“…The Professor, who is in charge of our affairs, President Mills, is now known as ‘President Do Little’ and it is important that all of us work together to make sure that Ghana has the sort of government that the people of Ghana deserve,” he said.
John Mahama – Commissioner General, Dead goat
The immediate past President of the Republic of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama has also had a fair share of name-calling, some of which have hence being tagged as nicknames.
During his tenure, John Mahama commissioned several projects which were completed during his administration some of which were started by his predecessor.
The exercise was especially rampant in the 2016 presidential election year as he was inaugurating facilities almost every week. The act earned him the name ‘Commissioner General’ from Ghanaians.
Another name which readily comes to mind is ‘Dead goat’.
In his final year of tenure, there was a spike in the rate of protests by civil organisations and labour unions who threatened to not vote for him in the 2016 elections.
But Mr Mahama, while addressing the situation cautioned that he was unperturbed by their threats since he had seen more protests in his first two years of governance altogether.
He indicated that just as a dead goat was unaware and unafraid of a knife, he had adopted same and as a result had acquired the ‘dead goat syndrome.’
Nana Akufo-Addo – King promise, Nana show boy, clearing agent
Three years into his presidency and Nana Akufo-Addo, like his predecessors, has also accrued a number of nicknames.
The names include Nana Showboy, King Promise, Clearing Agent, just to name a few.
Tagging him ‘King Promise’, the name of a favourite musician of the populace, for different reasons however, the name has come to stay.
Ghanaians and opposition members alike gave him the name to ridicule him for not fulfilling some of his campaign promises.
Despite the many times, he’s been made fun of for not keeping his promises, other projects which were key during his campaigns in the build-up to the 2016 elections have resulted in the name ‘Nana Showboy’.
The president’s incessant acquittal of appointees allegedly involved in corrupt deals caused members of the opposition party, National Democratic Congress, to label him as a clearing agent. Prior to his election into office, President Akufo-Addo promised Ghanaians he would champion the fight against corruption and protect the public purse.