Debate over Ghana’s independence heros a distraction – PPP

The Progressive Peoples Party (PPP), has said that the ongoing debate on who must be mainly credited for Ghana’s independence is an impediment to the country’s development.

According to the party, the debate will cause Ghanaians to lose focus on the developmental needs of the country if it is protracted.

President Akufo-Addo’s independence anniversary speech on Monday, 6th March 2017 which recounted a Ghana’s struggle for independence, giving prominence to the role of Dr J.B Danquah and other members of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) reignited a long-standing argument as to who should be credited with Ghana’s independence from British colonial rule in 1959.

While some have argued that the first President, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah deserves full recognition of leading and declaring the country independent, others have argued that Dr J.B Danquah and leading members of the UGCC which Dr Nkrumah broke away from to form his Convention People’s Party (CPP) must be celebrated for conceiving and attempting to negotiate independence with the British government.

The erstwhile National Democratic Congress (NDC) government with the approval of parliament declared Dr Kwame Nkrumah’s birthday, 21st September as a statutory public holiday; thus Founder’s Day, to recognize Nkrumah for his tremendous contribution towards the independence of Ghana and Liberation struggle for the entire African continent.

But the then opposition party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) contended the declaration and insisted the day should be celebrated as Founders’ day to ensure other leaders including J.B Danquah are also celebrated for their respective roles towards independence.

But speaking to Citi News, the policy analyst of PPP, Kofi Asamoah Siaw said a resolution must be reached as soon as possible on the matter to ensure that the country focuses on other things relevant to its development.

“I think this debate is an unfortunate distraction from the important things that we need to tackle. If having a ‘Founders’ day will make sure that all of us are included in the process and that we will put things behind us and focus on illiteracy, poverty, and joblessness then so be it, let us do it. We should solve it once and for all and make sure that we have space to tackle our issues.

Mr. Asamoah Siaw suggested that the day should be celebrated as ‘Founders’ day’ while another way is found to single out the contributions of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah and celebrated as well.

‘Only young people criticizing my speech’

Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo has dismissed allegations that he distorted Ghana’s political history in his speech at Ghana’s 60th independence anniversary parade.

According to him such criticisms were coming from people who “came much after the independence era.”

Speaking at a dinner on Thursday [March 9, 2017], the president insisted that his speech accorded the necessary recognition to Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, and was appreciated by the President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, 93, who had closely monitored Ghana’s progress towards independence, and the country’s history after independence.

By: Jonas Nyabor/

Published on 12 March 2017 | 10:16 am at Source