Ohene Djan is a Ghanaian, period!
Ever since Kufuor's government named the Accra Sports Stadium after the great football administrator, the late Ohene Djan, the Ga people have protested against the new name on several occasions. The latest to add his voice to the naming of the stadium after Ohene Djan is the Chief of Abbe and Mankralo of Odukpon Kpeehe in Accra, Nii Samoa Okropon I. In an interview he granted to our correspondent last week, Nii Samoa did not understand why a stadium that is found on Ga land should be named after somebody who is not a Ga.
He went further to name certain roads and streets in Accra, which have also been named after non-Gas when they also have great men like Tetteh Quarshie who also deserves such honours. Much as The Chronicle agrees that Ga heroes also deserve national honours, we think it would be out of place to use that as a basis to condemn the naming of certain facilities after illustrious Ghanaians.
Ghana is not a federal state, therefore, it would be wrong for Gas to assume that because certain facilities have been built on their land, they should be named after their past heroes only. Kwame Nkrumah is an Nzema but he has a whole university named after him in Kumasi. The great footballer, Baba Yara is a northerner and also has a facilitiy like the Kumasi Sports Stadium named after him. Though we stand for correction, we are yet to hear any Ashanti chief protest against the naming of these two great facilities after people who are not originally from the region. Whilst condemning governments, we think these Ga chiefs must be quick to admit that their heroes have also not been left out entirely.
Obetsebi Lamptey, who is a member of the big six and a Ga, has a roundabout named after him in Accra. Azumah Nelson also has a sports complex named after him. All the three modern interchanges that have been built in Accra have also been named after Gas. We refer to the King Tackie Tawiah Interchange, Ako Adjei Interchange and Tetteh Quarshie Interchange. Apart from these, numerous streets in Accra have been named after Gas. The Chronicle, therefore, finds it strange for anyone to assume that the Gas have been neglected when it comes to honouring their people.
The Chronicle believes that this agitation for the removal of Ohene Djan's name from the Accra Sports Stadium and others in Accra would not serve the interest of this country. Resources for the development of major facilities in Accra come from all parts of the country, therefore, Gas who are at the forefront of this agitation must tread cautiously before others also begin to emulate their wrong agitation. Anyone who is considered a national hero must be treated beyond tribal lines.
The Dagbon people should not have any cause to complain if Tamale Stadium is named after a Ga who has contributed significantly to the development of this country because Tamale, Accra, Ho, Kumasi, Sunyani and all parts of the country, form one beautiful Ghana.