Source: Joy OnlineA leading member of the Convention People’s Party (CPP), Professor Agyemang Badu Akosa, believes the overthrow of Ghana’s first President marked the end of critical development-thinking in the country.
According to Professor Akosa, during Dr Kwame Nkrumah’s reign, “there were development plans that were executed to the letter, and that was what brought Ghana to where it was at the time of the coup in 1966.”
The CPP stalwart was speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Monday, September 23, as part of discussions to mark the Founder’s Day which was observed on Saturday, September 21.
Dr Nkrumah’s overthrow on February 24, 1966 by the Ghana Armed Forces led by Emmanuel K. Kotoka has been described by many as a major setback for Ghana’s development.
Professor Akosa is one such persons who says “Ghanaians stopped to think for this country on 24th February 1966,” stressing that everything that has happened subsequently had been ad hoc.
“The major difference [between Nkrumah’s time and now] is that there was central planning and people spent quality time to think for this country”, he added.
Evidence of critical thinking under Nkrumah’s government for the country could be seen in the way his administration sought to reverse the situation where Ghana’s economy was “serving another [country’s] economy”, Professor Akosa maintained.
Again, he said education, which is currently facing many challenges was a priority for Nkrumah.
He said at the time Dr Nkrumah took office, only 5% of Ghanaians were educated hence one of the first things he (Nkrumah) did was to make education free so that every citizen of this country would be educated.
“It was on the statute that if you did not go to school it was the government’s role to ensure you go to school…in other words nothing was left to chance”, he said.
He bemoaned the current situation where, according to him, science has been “de-emphasised” in our educational system, noting that science was the “key to industrialisation or…entrepreneurship”
He said the trend where students were moving towards the Arts was a great dis-service to industrialisation in the country.
“Who is establishing what [industry] to be managed by who?”, he asked.
Had Nkrumah been allowed to complete his mission to industrialise the country, “by now there would be a shoe factory not only in Kumasi, but one in the North, and another one in the South [of the country]”, he said.
“Where you do not put thought processes to the development agenda, you go nowhere”, said Professor Akosa.