Prioritise ideals of Dr Nkrumah to inform development
A section of the public has called for the prioritisation of the ideals and economic idealogy of Dr Kwame Nkrumah to inform the country’s development.
While majority of the people who the Daily Graphic interacted with extolled the works of the country’s first President and leader of Pan Africanism, others called for the continued immortalisation of the freedom fighter and the continuation of policies he started more than 60 years ago.
A Language Coordinator at the Ghana Education Service (GES), Tema Metro, Selina Bernice Owusu, said it was appropriate to observe and commemorate the day critically because if that was not done, there would come a day when a generation would not know who Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah was.
Ms Owusu suggested that all students should be made to wear African attires on the day to sensitise them and the public to the relevance of the day and what Nkrumah stood for.
She said some people did not know who Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah was, adding that while others had knowledge about him as the first President of the country, they also had little or no information of his contributions to the country as well as his principles.
She said they considered the day as one of the numerous holidays observed in the country.
Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Day
Tomorrow marks Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Day, a day set aside for citizens to come together to commemorate the birthday of the nation’s first President, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, who was born on September 21, 1909 at Nkroful in the Ellembelle District in the Western Region.
The day, observed as a statutory public holiday, is also used to pay tribute to the founder father as an avenue to promote Pan-Africanism, highlight development models and educate the future generation.
The holiday was formerly marked as Founders Day to honour Nkrumah as the first person to have led the country to independence in West Africa.
However, as a result of the New Public Holidays Act, 2018 passed by Parliament to amend the Public Holidays Act, 2001 in the President Akufo-Addo led government, it is now observed as the first President's birthday.
If alive, Nkrumah would have turned 114 years tomorrow.
Sharing her views, a student, Christiana, said the day allowed people to remember and honour his immense contributions to the nation's liberation while fostering a sense of national pride and unity.
“The country can leverage Nkrumah's legacy by emphasising the importance of strong leadership, visionary thinking, and dedication to national development.
This can inspire current and future leaders to emulate his transformative approach”, she said.
A part-time worker who gave her name only as Felicia also explained that the day served as a reminder of Kwame Nkrumah’s commitment to uniting the continent and encouraging Africans to continue pursuing collaboration and collective progress.
She noted that by actively supporting regional integration and facilitating cultural exchanges, it could lead to an increased collaboration, trade and shared prosperity across the continent.
Another student, Jennifer Dei, also said Nkrumah influenced various development models during his presidency.
Thus, the Memorial Day provides an opportunity to reflect on these models and their relevance in shaping the nation’s current and future development strategies.
Ms Dei stated that the country could leverage Nkrumah's development models by prioritising investments in key sectors such as manufacturing, education and infrastructure.
She said, by adopting a strategic approach inspired by Nkrumah's ideas, the country could fast-track its socio-economic development and improve the quality of life for its citizens.
A student of the University of Ghana, Emmanuella Addison, said Nkrumah played significant roles which had not been effectively sustained by the country’s leaders.
Ms Addison reiterated that acknowledgement must be given to the impact created in the country and plans must be made to contribute to his success.
That, she said, would be consistent progress in our national policies for the growth of the country.
She, however, said lectures must be given to students on that day to celebrate Nkrumah and discuss the way forward in contributing to nation building.
Ms Addison said any loopholes in the current leadership must also be identified and addressed in the light of Nkrumah’s legacy.