The death is reported of Mr Bernard Joao da Rocha, First National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), after a short illness. He died on Tuesday morning at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital according to family sources.
Mr da Rocha was for a long time a Lecturer of the Ghana School of Law and was the First Ghanaian Director of Legal Education and a Fellow of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA). He wrote a number of articles including “Defamation And The Freedom Of The Media”.
He was once the Secretary of the Ghana Bar Association and in 2006 he was awarded the Order of The Star of Ghana.
Professor Wayo Seini, an NPP stalwart, in a paper presented at an NPP Founders/ Patrons Forum on 3 August 2007 wrote: “Mr B.J. da Rocha was the principal actor in the formation of NPP. Indeed he did not only initiate and chair meetings that led to the formation of the Party, but he skillfully guided and nurtured the PP (Progress Party) group meetings into NPP.”
At the same forum Mr da Rocha bemoaned the acrimony that had crept into the NPP and warned “if care is not taken, we will slide into failure and this must not be allowed to happen,” which unfortunately happened with the NPP’s loss of political power after Election 2008.