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Reflex Eco Group – Ghana News

By Akwasi Agyeman-Dua (Local Journalist & Media and Advocacy Advisor)

This Blog is sponsored by http://www.reflexecogroup.com


The First President of Ghana, Dr Kwame Nkrumah is recognized in history as a great man, more specifically a great Pan-Africanist of no mean repute.   At Ghana’s independence in 1957, he declared that Ghana’s independence was meaningless unless it was linked with the total liberation of Africa.  September 21 this year marks his 104th birthday.   He died 41 years ago at the age of 63 in Bucharest, Romania where he had gone for medical treatment.   The African Union has erected a statue to his honour at Addis Ababa.  He has received other recognitions in Africa and globally.   Ghana now celebrates his birthday as a public holiday.

Kwame was born as Kofi Nwiah at Nkroful in the Western Region of Ghana.  After training as a teacher at Achimota College, Accra and teaching for a while, he left for further studies in the United States of America, where he stayed for more than a decade.  He later left for the United Kingdom to continue his studies.  While there he helped to organise the momentous fifth Pan-African Congress in 1945.

Dr Nkrumah returned to the then Gold Coast in 1947 at the invitation of the pro-independence nationalist movement, the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) to be its General-Secretary.  Kwame was arrested with five other leading members of the UGCC, for political reasons arising out of public unrest in 1948 and they became known as “The Big Six”.  He stayed with the UGCC till 1949 when he broke away with others to form the Convention People’s Party (CPP) which eventually led the Gold Coast to independence.

Nkrumah’s birthday, which has been designated ‘Founder’s Day’ has generated the debate as to whether he is indeed the founder of Ghana or there were others, for instance other members of the ‘Big Six’ who equally deserve to be recognized as Founders. How long this debate would go on can’t easily be predicted.

I  wish to propose that September 21 even if it is celebrated should be called ‘The Patriots Day’ to make it more embracing and motivational for the old and young, Nkrumaists and non-Nkrumaists.   The National Commission on Civic Education may be contracted to organise the day to promote patriotism and   Pan-Africanism among Ghanaians.  The Osagyefo, Dr Nkrumah and all well-meaning Ghanaians and Pan-Africanists would be more than grateful for this gesture which would encapsulate the ideals and passion Nkrumah had for Ghana and Africa.  This would call for rededication and further commitment by all lovers of Africa’s freedom and prosperity.