103 Years Ago
One hundred and three years ago, a political legend considered controversial in some circles was born to us in the sleepy town of Nkroful in today's Western Region.
Every people are blessed with great men in their history. We have had ours in the persons of the late Kwame Nkrumah and others, although like every mortal, especially history-shaping ones, he attracted controversial footnotes in his biography.
Today's commemoration is about Kwame Nkrumah, whose contribution towards the attainment of independence, in tandem with others, is ingrained in history and justifiably so.
We acknowledge the fact, though for emphasis, that he could not have achieved the feat without the important support of others, some of whom even paid the ultimate price of laying down their lives for the country.
We make this important addition because of the controversy which usually dogs the history of our journey to independence.
By a stroke of fate, Kwame Nkrumah was invited to come and join in the struggle for independence from abroad. The young man arrived and with a new zeal and means of expediting the journey towards 'Self-Government Now,' he set to work. It eventually came and the Union Jack was lowered for the hoisting of the Red, Gold, Green colours of a nascent nation.
The momentum he seized at the time that he did was to become an important chapter in our history and the world's. No chapter about British rule in West Africa would be complete without the mention of the political exploits of the man Kwame Nkrumah.
We commemorate the life of this controversial political legend today, bearing in mind the dictum that a country which does not acknowledge the role of her heroes is not worth dying for.
By this commentary, we are encouraging our compatriots to reflect upon the sacrifices of the late Kwame Nkrumah and the Ghana he envisaged until he was swept from power.
We salute the decision to declare a day for such commemorations without which adequate reflection of the life of the legend would not have attracted the fillip it deserves.
Kwame Nkrumah's Pan-African project has stood the test of time, as it is mentioned often in contemporary studies in independence struggle in British West Africa.
He turned our country into a Mecca for liberation fighters, literally opening the gates of the country so those yearning for independence and freedom could come and drink from his vase of hope, inspiration and material support.
We salute his courage, pray for his soul and call on all compatriots to rededicate ourselves to the service of our motherland and that would be a fantastic commemoration of the life of a man who concluded that the independence of his country, Ghana, would be meaningless unless it was linked with the total liberation of the African continent.