Feature Article of Friday, 22 September 2017
Columnist: Denis Andaban
Dr. Kwame Nkrumah (born Francis Nwia-Kofi Ngonloma, September 21, 1909 – April 27, 1972) was an African political leader. He was well known as the first Prime Minister, then President, of Ghana. He imagined a united Africa. Interestingly today which marks that every day deserves the attention of Ghana as a nation and hence my attempt to reflect on some of the legendary blueprints of Dr Kwame Nkrumah, a man I sometimes prefer to call ” the magical political icon”
In the more recent past, there has been this topical issue of whether or not Nkrumah is a founder or co founder of Ghana. Listening to notable “old brains” and some political commentators, my inferences landed on the fact that “a man may die but his legacies live on”. History in any form cannot be changed especially when some stories are almost “householdslike” that almost every body has a bit of knowledge about. In my succinct lay man’s description, Nkrumah was an illuminating icon who electrified and gave light to Ghana and Africa at large. The history about this noble man of the century transcends Africa because it dominates global political literature and so any attempt by anybody for any reason, to change our history by claiming false glory shall only be a desert mirage or call it an exercise in futility.
Some of us are young but thanks to education, we have read a bit of the political history of Ghana. Reading about Nkrumah sharpens my political consciousness. I consider myself a Pan Africanist and wish to contribute my part in Pan Africanism. This how best how good values and legacies left by men of substance can do to the current generation. His writings and documentaries continue to transform a multitude of people across the globe. I can even state without any equivocation that other countries rather value the works of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah more than Ghana perhaps because of our long standing partisan approach to everything, the style of politics that has led many African states into a quagmire of abject poverty, political instability, genocides, unemployment and largely insecurity.
Our minds are too deeply rooted in partisanship that we shamelessly demonstrate hatred and vindictiveness with pride. No wonder at a point in the political history of Ghana, the books, images and other important historical artefacts of Nkrumah were burnt, in a covetous and lazy attempt to skew our history in favour of parochial cum lazy politicians who contributed less or almost nothing in our quest for political liberation from Western rule.
We have come too far and I think that we must put aside this politics of vindictively and self-centeredness and embrace prevailing circumstances, clearly militating against sustainable growth of our economic. The unending deliberate attempt to still vilify others who have duly paid their dues to the development of Ghana is scornful and pathetic.
We cannot take solace in touching old wounds instead of healing those wounds that were brought about by our justifiably radical political struggle. Our energies must be directed towards adding up to the almost unbeatable records set by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. It is on this premise that I think the current decision of government to subject Nkrumah’s contributions to debate, in an attempt to make a retrospective judgement, absolutely unproductive.
This conspicuous demonstration of anti-Nkrumahism” has the propensity to further divide us along tribal and political lines. That kind of unjustifiable gesticulation must stop if and only if we want to build a solid nation.
We need to adopt Nkrumah’s leadership style, vision and policies to bring back the nation to occupy a niche in Africa’s development. The massive infrastructural development policies, the radical industrialisation policy, the massive investment in agriculture, education, health and his great contributions to continental and international issues are what we should be reviewing and taking lessons from. That is the only way we can celebrate our milestone as a country.
“Nkrumahism” should be a national philosophy and should guide us in shaping socioeconomic policies that can better save the vast majority of our people from the captivity of abject poverty. His philosophy must be comprehensively integrated in our educational curriculum to instill among the younger generation, effective leadership, philosophical orientation among other essential values, to cure the increasing rate of leadership conundrum in Ghana and Africa
In my personal view, any politician in Africa who do not respect the leadership style and legacies of Nkrumah is a half-baked politician who has little or non to contribute to the development of Africa especially in our cultural settings where we have very complicated but intertwined emerging developmental challenges.
On this day, 21st September, 2017, the birthday of the founder of Ghana, Dr. O Kwame Nkrumah, I urge all citizenry to see collective interest as the more effective tool in nation building. In Nkrumah’s quest for independence for Nkrumah, he brought everybody together without discrimination. People on the street, the ordinary farmers, drivers, weavers among others across every tribe, religion and social class together and guided them his philosophy through collective interest. His humidity, resilience and vision was the spirit behind the team work that trumpeted and subsequently gave birth to independence.