The opposition National Democratic Congress’ (NDC) celebration of the now Kwame Nkrumah Memorial day on September 21, will include a protest march to register its displeasure with the New Patriotic Party government’s proposal to make August 4 Founders Day.
The NDC feels this is an attempt to distort history and force on Ghanaians “some founders.”
“Any attempt to force on us some founders will be resisted by all progressive forces in this country. Ghana’s founding president’s birthday is 21st of September. That day has been recognized by even the African Union,” the NDC’s Organiser, Kofi Adams, said to Citi News.
The NDC government in 2012, under John Atta Mills earmarked September 21, which is Kwame Nkrumah’s birthday, as Founder’s Day, sparking the debate over Ghana’s founders and concerns that other key players in the fight for independence were being sidelined.
Some five years down the line, President Nana Akufo-Addo has issued an executive instrument to rename September 21 Nkrumah Memorial day, and he has proposed legislation to designate August 4 as Founders Day.
August 4 is noted as the date for the formation of the Aborigines’ Rights Protection Society by John Mensah Sarbah in 1897, and the formation of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) in 1947 by J.B. Danquah and George Alfred “Paa” Grant.
As some expected, this was not going to sit well with the NDC, which has long touted its Nkrumahist credentials, and held Ghana’s first president as the sole founder of the country.
Mr. Adams said the protest was to serve notice that true Ghanaians were able to differentiate between the Ghanaians who played roles in the independence struggle, and the perceived one true founder of the country.
“We are not just demonstrating, we are giving indications that, true Ghanaians, Ghanaians with conscience understand and believe that many persons played roles in bringing us independence, but Kwame Nkrumah was on top of it and that day has been recognized by Ghanaians and has been recognized by the African Union.”
He further hinted that, this proposed legislation will be reversed if the NDC assumes the mantle of governance some years down the line.
“It must be made very clear that a future government, that is not an NPP government will correct this distortion. If they ever attempt to distort this information, it will be corrected.”