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Kojo Yankah former Member of Parliament in Ghana. He also served as a Minister of State in the Rawlings government. He is the founder & President of the African University College of Communications and is also a former editor of the Daily Graphic, the widest circulation newspaper in Ghana. writes..
I am reading elsewhere the propaganda spread about Kwame Nkrumah ‘squandering’ foreign resources left by the British. Considering that Kwame Nkrumah did not build one house for himself or for his family; and that he did not even know what foreign account meant to him, let us consider only a few of what he spent the reserves on:
In the Health sector, Nkrumah’s government built Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, made Korle Bu a Teaching Hospital and expanded its capacity by adding on Medical, Maternity, Surgical and Child Health blocks.
Nkrumah established the Ghana Medical School, provided Free Medical Care to ALL citizens; and established GIHOC Pharmaceuticals which was to become the leading pharmaceutical industry in West Africa; built several hospitals and clinics.
Factories and Industries ? Every region had at least one factory. Examples: Aboso Glass Factory in Western Region; Zuarungu Meat Factory in the Northern Region; Wenchi Tomato Factory in Brong Ahafo Region; Akosombo Textiles Limited in Eastern Region; Pwalugu Tomato Factory in the North; Kumasi Shoe Factory, Kumasi Jute Factory in Ashanti Region, Kade Match Factory in Eastern Region; Nsawam Cannery in Eastern Region; Bolgatanga Meat Processing Factory and many more.
Ghana had a shipping line, Black Star Line, with 15 ships. Ghana Airways Corporation, Ghana National Trading Corporation, COCOBOD, VALCO, State Hotels Corporation, Tema Oil Refinery, Ghana Film Industry, GHAPOHA etc were all established under Nkrumah.
Tema Township was created to accommodate a new port city outside Takoradi. Several Estates were spread out in Accra and Kumasi.
Within the same 10 years, Kwame Nkrumah established the Ghana Education Trust to build a number of secondary schools like Mfantsiman Secondary School, Winneba Secondary School, Ofori Panin Secondary School, Apam Secondary School, Dormaa Secondary School, Techiman Secondary School, Labone Secondary School, Oda Secondary School, Swedru Secondary School, among others. Eight training colleges were also built at the same time.
With universities and technical colleges, I can name only a few:
Ghana Nautical College (now Regional Maritime University), Kumasi Technical Institute, Ajumako School of Languages, Accra Polytechnic now Accra Technical University, University of Science Education (now University of Cape Coast (UCC), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Institute of African Studies, Kwame Nkrumah Institute of Economics and Political Science (now south campus of UEW), made University of Ghana (then University College of Gold Coast affiliated to university of London) a full fledged university to award its own degrees and became their first chancellor, among others.
Yes, Ghana under Nkrumah supported a number of African countries to attain their liberation and independence to make the Organization of African Union possible. On Ghana’s independence day, Martin Luther King was invited to take inspiration from Ghana’s achievement. Then followed George Padmore, WEB Du Bois, Dr Lee, Muhamed Ali, and others to strengthen Nkrumah’s Pan Africanist agenda.
No attempt to denigrate or reduce Kwame Nkrumah’s pre-eminent role in Ghana and Africa’s development will succeed. Rather, we should ask ourselves, “What went wrong” and continue to build from there.