Reconciliation Roundabout: Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Dr J.B. Danquah in focus
Strategically located at the intersection of the Accra-Cape Coast road and the Winneba-Swedru road is the Reconciliation Roundabout, previously known as the Winneba Roundabout at Winneba, capital town of the Effutu Municipality in the Central Region.
Standing in the middle of the Reconciliation Roundabout is a monument that depicts Ghana’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, and J.B. Danquah in a handshake.
This is a posthumous reconciliation between Dr Nkrumah and Dr J.B. Danquah, two political allies in the struggle for Ghana’s independence who later became rivals torn apart by ideological differences.
As part of his Effutu Dream Project, the Member of Parliament (MP) of the Effutu Constituency, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, initiated a number of beautification projects to enhance the landscape in Winneba to attract people to the area, improve tourism and more importantly, promote peace and unity among the people of Simpa (Winneba).
As part of this project, the Winneba Roundabout has been given a facelift and renamed. On October 20, 2021, the roundabout was inaugurated by the MP as the Reconciliation Roundabout. Aside from the beautification, the monument carries a message of reconciliation.
To explain the concept and why he personally funded the project, Mr Afenyo-Markin said the monument projected the theme of reconciliation and zero tolerance for extremists in politics.
Giving the background, he said both Dr Nkrumah and Dr J.B. Danquah who were part of the founding fathers of Ghana and the ‘Big Six’ were very important personalities in the history of the Effutu State.
“Not many people know today that Dr J.B. Danquah was the lawyer for the Effutu State and, therefore, had a very close relationship with the traditional authorities.”
“When Dr Nkrumah was brought to the Gold Coast to join the struggle for independence, one of the places he was sent to was Effutu. I mean after Takoradi, Saltpond, he was brought here to Effutu and Nana Ghartey accepted him, and together with Dr J.B. Danquah they had a sort of bond,” Mr Afenyo-Markin added.
He admitted that when these two patriots later fell off, it affected the whole history of a people hence the need for reconciliation. “We are saying that a disagreement with your opponent does not mean destruction,” Afenyo-Markin stated.
Aside from the giant sculpture, the roundabout has a fountain, a well-kept lawn with ornamental plants and decorative lights geometrically structured to create a cozy ambiance.
There are other attraction sites sited in the Effutu community as part of its tourism drive with each project telling a specific important story. The Effutu Dream is to position the town as the best place to live, work, visit for tourism and to invest in Ghana.