Opinions Wed, 31 Jan 2007

Ghana At 50: History Vs. Revision

Hopefully, by now most Ghanaians have seen the various the(coffee mugs, clocks, coat of arms) commemorating the 50th anniversary of as an independent state. In the coffee mugs package is a pamphlet with a synopsis of the history of Ghana which I find quite disturbing.

In this pamphlet, nothing is mentioned about Ghana as an independent State within this period. Nor is Kwame Nkrumah’s name mentioned. Clearly, revisionism is at work here. But why? Is it out of shame?

I mean, no Ghanaian can, with the utmost pride, announce to the World our turbulent history. That, the first Government we had, established one party rule and detained dissidents without trial; That a coup d’etat overthrew the CPP administration ( after Nine years) and the Democracy established in its place lasted only two years.

No Ghanaian can, with square shoulders and chin up, proclaim to the World a General ruled for six years and was kicked out of office by his subordinates. And that, less than a year, junior officers in turn kicked that Government out, installed a second Democracy which lasted less than 3 years. Followed by almost 15 years of dictatorial, despotic and tyrannical rule under the guise of a revolution; And that we have managed to execute almost all former Heads of State ( deservingly or not);

No Ghanaian can look the World straight in the eyes and remind the World that we have gone from a leader Cocoa producer to merely a scraper on the World scene.

Judging from the mess above-mentioned, it is no wonder, there are still amongst us, those who believe, with the strongest convictions that it was premature for Ghana and thus, Africa to “rush” towards Independence. But to them I say, I would rather be a Free man sleeping on the dirt floor than a Slave living in a mansion. ( more on this another time).

However, there is hope on the horizon. So far, Ghana has produced two of the most outstanding Black Africans in Black Africa; namely, Kwame Nkrumah and Kofi Annan. And currently, we have a Democracy ( still in a cradle) which has successfully and successively held four elections and counting. In addition, Ghana has never had Civil war; NOT YET and hopefully never.( Although Political science theorists and Philosophers consider Civil War a natural ingredient in the evolution of Nation-States).

These, we can celebrate but, with a half heart and uneasiness.

Whether these souvenirs are Government sanctioned or how it intends to celebrate this unprecedented milestone is not known to this Author at this time. But for posterity sake, our History, and the true History must be celebrated. Not the version offered in the pamphlet.

Revisionism is very dangerous and is often motivated by shame, out of spite, by revenge and mostly employed to hide the truth. What is at play here is up to you to decide.

But It must be vehemently and strongly discouraged. I therefore beseech the Government to look into this matter if it is unaware of it. Otherwise, come 6th March, Ghanaians should put on their “Kuntunkuni” ( Black clothes) and mourn; For the repercussions is unfathomable

Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.

Columnist: Afrifa, Akwasi