Yesterday, the country marked the 62nd anniversary of attaining republican status from its colonial masters, the British.
Until 2019, the day was observed as a national holiday, which was also used to celebrate Senior Citizens in recognition of their contribution to the development of the country.
However, the day was changed from a public holiday to a commemorative day in 2019.
At the time that the government sought to change the day into a commemorative one, there was a lot of brouhaha, with some arguing that the day should still be declared a public holiday.
As the country commemorated the day yesterday, the Convention People’s Party (CPP) reiterated the need for the state to restore Republic Day (July 1) to a public holiday.
The party’s argument is that the non-commemorative nature of the day denies young Ghanaians the education on the significance of the day.
For its part, the National Democratic Party (NDP) said the issues and values of popular participation in governance, integrity, probity, accountability and social justice were some of the hallmarks in the achievement of a republic. It, therefore, stressed that the day would ever remain a deserving reference and commemoration of the leadership path to an ideal statehood.
Yesterday, various cadet corps, mainly the youth, commemorated the day with a parade at the Black Star Square which ended in a formation that depicted the phrase, “Youth will do better through volunteerism”.
The Daily Graphic is excited about the involvement of the youth in commemorating the day as it will serve as a bulwark in sustaining the celebration of the day and not keep it out of the national calendar.
We are also happy that the youth chose the theme: “Working together through volunteerism, bouncing back together”, to commemorate the day as it will serve as motivation to the rest of Ghanaians to use volunteerism as a tool for national development.
The Daily Graphic believes that with a large segment of the population being the youth, it is important that we not only engage but involve them in most of the national activities to prepare them for leadership positions.
We agree with the Deputy Chief of Staff, Emmanuel Adumua-Bossman, when he stated at the parade grounds that: “If all of us cooperate, Ghana could invest in the youth in various meaningful ways such as through music, camping and other educational competitions that engage them so that no individual, group or persons or terrorist entities could influence them negatively”.
We must all play our part well by encouraging our youth to take up active roles in our homes, educational facilities and churches to exploit their talents so that they can be of benefit to the nation.
The Daily Graphic believes that if we all do this, we will be preventing the youth from indulging in activities that can jeopardise the national interest.
We applaud the organisers of the parade for especially involving the youth, our future leaders, in such an important national event.
Important as the day is, the Daily Graphic believes that the involvement of the youth will certainly sustain the significance of the day whether it is a public holiday or a commemorative day.
We need to remind ourselves that July 1 of every year is signifi cant to our body politic, hence the need to celebrate it so that we do not lose our history.