A cross-section of Ghanaians have called on all to join hands to make the climax of Ghana's Golden Jubilee celebrations on Tuesday, March 6, 2007, a memorable one.
According to them, they had become very enthusiastic about the celebrations and expressed the hope that the day would be celebrated with the same euphoria which greeted the attainment of independence in 1957.
A number of people the Daily Graphic spoke to said everyone must put aside any differences or grudge and join in the activities on Tuesday.
They were, however, of the view that the activities marking the anniversary should have centred on merrymaking and should have been all inclusive.
They said the government should also have procured enough souvenirs to distribute free of charge, especially to schoolchildren and the elderly.
Textile dealers and other dealers in anniversary souvenirs were also of the view that the items should have been printed earlier to make them readily accessible.
Mr Kofi Abban, a public servant, stressed the need for all Members of Parliament (MPs), Ministers of State and top public servants who would participate in the Jubilee Parade to wear the anniversary cloth on that day.
He, however, expressed regret that the programmes seemed restricted to a certain class of people and cited the anniversary lectures as an example.
He said the youth and students in particular should have been encouraged to participate in the lectures, since they would have to tell the story in 50 years' time and beyond.
Miss Lucy Adomah Yeboah, a public servant, said she was disappointed when she observed that nothing serious was happening in terms of creating the right atmosphere for the celebrations.
She was, however, happy that things had improved in the course of the past one week.
For 68-year-old Samuel Azalu, the celebrations had been low-keyed, compared to what took place on independence day itself.
Nana Afra, a dealer in textiles said the anniversary cloths should have come at least four to six months before the climax of the activities.
Major activities to climax the event begin today with the enactment of the February 28 Cross-roads Shooting Incident at the Cenotaph.
Prior to that, there will be the launch of national brass band music competition at the Swedru Park with the aim of galvanising latent talent.
On March 1, 2007, there will be a press conference to orientate Africans in the Diaspora and international guests at the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum at 10.00 a.m., while the Confederation of African Football (CAF) will hold its Glo-Awards to confer honours on African players at the Accra International Conference Centre in the evening.
A day of Muslim prayers for the Golden Jubilee celebrations will be held nation-wide on March 2, 2007, as well as the hosting of the finals of the school's debate at the GNAT Hall.
Later in the evening, there will be a Miss [email protected] gala ball, during which there will be a parade of all the Miss Ghanas over the past 50 years.
There will also be an Independence Nite Bash at the Boomerang Nite Club and the Asanka Locals at 8.00 p.m. on March 2, 2007 as part of Ghana's Golden Homecoming Event and the hosting of the 20th Pappoe Thompson Choral Festival at the Arts Centre at 1.00 p.m.
Then on March 3, 2007, there will be a Zongo durbar at the Efua Sutherland Children's Park where the ethnic groups in Nima will host their Northern Ghana folks and a galaxy of international African chiefs to showcase tradition, pomp and the majesty of their Royal households, as well as a durbar of Ga Dangme chiefs at the forecourt of the State House.
A national conference on “The role of Ghana in Africa's redemption” will be held at the GNAT Hall in the afternoon on March 3 and a concert dubbed “From Highlife to Hiplife” at the Independence Square and nationwide from 7.00 p.m.
Accra's burgeoning Keep Fit clubs will organise a Golden Jubilee Walk from Ayi-Mensah to the Aburi Gardens on the same day at 4:30 a.m. and an Independence African Fashion show at the Ghana International Trade Fair Site at 6.00 p.m.
On March 4, 2007, A. B. Chinebuah will continue his radio talk series on “Constitutional reforms for the attainment of Independence within the shortest possible time”.
Ghana's ace comedian, Kweku Sintim Misa, will, in the evening, put up a show, “[email protected] now or the appropriate time” at the Accra International Conference Centre.
Zambia's first President, Mr Kenneth Kaunda, will, on March 5, deliver the University of Ghana Special Anniversary Lecture at the Great Hall at 10.00 a.m.
Presentation of awards to winners of the schools debate will take place simultaneously at the Banquet Hall with the declaration of independence at the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum at 4.00 p.m. on the same day, with “[email protected]: Telling our own story” taking centre stage at the AICC.
On Independence Day, there will be Golden Jubilee anniversary parades throughout the country, mountain climbing and a mini cultural durbar at the foothills of the Krobo Mountains.
There will also be a festival of masqueraders and a show by Rocky Dawuni at the La Beach, as well as street parties to be organised by district assemblies on the theme, “The Nation Rejoices”.
On March 7, 2007, the Ghana Armed Forces will organise an anniversary military tattoo where the finest of horsemanship and precision drill, with jaw-dropping motorcycle acrobatics, will be exhibited at the Independence Square.
The United Kingdom's High Commissioner to South Africa, Mr Paul Boateng, will deliver this year's Aggrey-Fraser-Guggisberg Memorial Lectures at the University of Ghana, Legon, at 5.00 p.m. on March 7, 2007, while there will be the Independence Dinner and presentation of certificates at the Banquet Hall, State House, at 7.00 p.m.
Story by Albert K. Salia