Why name airport after a ‘thug’ who staged a coup against Nkrumah? – Ras Mubarak


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Lt. Gen. EK Kotoka and Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah

Former Member of Parliament for Kumbungu, Ras Mubarak has waded into the debate about why Ghana’s main airport must be renamed as a matter of urgency.

The main international airport is currently named after Lt.-Gen. Emmanuel Kwasi Kotoka, one of the architects of the coup that overthrew Kwame Nkrumah in 1966.

It is not the first time the call to rename the Kotoko International Airport (KIA) has been made.

Ras Mubarak in a January 3, 2023 Facebook post said it would serve a better purpose if the name is changed to Accra International Airport or that it is named after a Ga Chief of Salifu Dagarti.

“To glorify the traitor Kotoka with an airport in his honour is downright insulting,” his post read in part.

“Nkrumah’s ghost won’t stop haunting Ghana until we get rid of such nonsensical things and properly atone for our sins. The last vestige of that painful February 24th, 1966 event must be wiped off,” the post concluded.

KSM makes call for change

Showbiz personality Kwaku Sintim-Misa has described the naming of an airport after Lieutenant-General Emmanuel Kwasi Kotoka as disgraceful.

Born on 26th September 1926, Kotoka was a member of the National Liberation Council which came to power through a military coup d’état on 24th February 1966. This was the overthrow of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the first president of the republic.

The existing airport, Kotoka International Airport, was originally a military airport used by the British Royal Air Force during World War II in 1946.

The facility was handed over to civilian authority after a successful pull-out by the military. In response to globalization and the growing demand for air travel at the time, a development project was launched to reconfigure the structure into a terminal building in 1956.

The completion of the project set the stage for Ghana Airways to use the airport as its base in 1958.

The airport was originally designed and commissioned to accommodate a maximum of five hundred thousand (500,000) passengers annually. In 1969, the Accra International Airport was renamed Kotoka International Airport in memory of the late Lt. General E.K. Kotoka.

Read the full post below:

How have we come to accept this national outrage, that our country’s main airport is still named after a thug who helped stage a coup against Kwame Nkrumah, our national hero and greatest African of the last millennium?

What’s even more insulting is the fact that this airport, which was previously a military airbase under British colonial rule was refurbished and expanded into an international airport by Kwame Nkrumah.

To glorify the traitor Kotoka with an airport in his honour is downright insulting. Just change the name to Accra International Airport or after a great Ga Chief or Salifu Dagarti Int. Airport. Whatever. Certainly not Kotoka. How difficult is this?

Nkrumah’s ghost won’t stop haunting Ghana until we get rid of such nonsensical things and properly atone for our sins. The last vestige of that painful February 24th, 1966 event must be wiped off.

How have we come to accept this national outrage, that our country’s main airport is still named after a thug who helped stage a coup against Kwame Nkrumah, our national hero and greatest African of the last millennium?

What’s even more insulting is the fact that this airport, which was previously a military airbase under British colonial rule was refurbished and expanded into an international airport by Kwame Nkrumah.

To glorify the traitor Kotoka with an airport in his honour is downright insulting. Just change the name to Accra International Airport or after a great Ga Chief or Salifu Dagarti Int. Airport. Whatever. Certainly not Kotoka. How difficult is this?

Nkrumah’s ghost won’t stop haunting Ghana until we get rid of such nonsensical things and properly atone for our sins. The last vestige of that painful February 24th, 1966 event must be wiped off.


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