A historian with the University of Cape Coast (UCC) has said speculations that the President will rename the University of Ghana (UG) after his uncle Joseph Boakye Danquah is misplaced.
Professor Osei Kwarteng said it is important for every country to honour its heroes, saying a nation that fails to honour its heroes is not worth dying for.
He told Joy News’ Gifty Andoh Appiah on The Pulse programme Tuesday that President Akufo-Addo should ignore the needless politicization and criticisms and give credit to the country’s deserving heroes.
“Once the President is going to do this, there is definitely going to be a backlash. People will say that he is projecting his family members, but once it was not wrong to name certain institutions after deserving Ghanaians like Dr Kwame Nkrumah, he should go ahead,” he said.
According to Prof. Kwarteng, JB Danquah played an enormous role although he was not the one who led the country to independence.
The President’s comment that his uncle JB Danquah founded the University of Ghana has generated some speculations that he may be considering a renaming of the country’s premier university.
Speaking at the launch of UG’s Endowment Fund he said it was through the inspired vision of the pan-Africanist that Ghana got its own university.
He recently announced the name change of the University of Professional Studies, Accra to Opoku Ampomah University of Professional Studies in honour of the school’s founder, Nana Opoku Ampomah.
In support of the President Akufo-Addo's action, Prof Kwarteng said the individuals being honoured are deserving and might have paid their dues to the country.
He argues that renaming an institution like UG will not alter the prestige or honour attached to the educational institution.
“Society is dynamic and there have been countries like current day Russia which used to be USSR…in Ghana, we used to have the University of Science and Technology which became Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, but the name change did not really change anything.
“Its core mandate will not change, the degrees it awarded previously will still be valid and those it will award will still be valid,” he said.
Prof Kwarteng noted that when history is being told, it will be said that the institution used to carry another name.