Rawlings died from COVID-19 complications on Thursday. He was 73 years old.
“Africa has lost a stalwart of Pan-Africanism and a charismatic continental statesman.”
“My sincere condolences to his family, the people and the government of Ghana,” Mahamat wrote on Twitter.
Rawlings was a Ghanaian military officer and politician who led the country from 1981 to 2001 and also for a brief period in 1979.
Rawlings initially came to power in Ghana as a flight lieutenant of the Ghana Air Force following a coup d’état in 1979. Before that, he led an unsuccessful coup attempt against the ruling military government on 15 May 1979, just five weeks before scheduled democratic elections were due to take place.
After initially handing power over to a civilian government, he took back control of the country on 31 December 1981 as the Chairman of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC).