“I want to thank President Nana Akufo-addo and his government for starting this debate . . .it’s a debate that we welcome, it is a debate that we will participate in and it is a debate that we will win,” says the Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr.
His comments come on the back of debates and controversies that emerged after the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the formation of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC).
The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, has stated that Dr Kwame Nkrumah cannot be credited to be the sole founding father of Ghana, since the struggles for independence was started by other prominent Ghanaians.
He said the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) leaders fashioned the independence struggle and Dr Nkrumah came later through the invitation of UGCC leaders, “and added significantly to the struggle”.
Delivering a lecture on the 70th anniversary of the formation of the UGCC in Accra last Friday night, Prof. Oquaye said to say that Dr Nkrumah was the only founding father of Ghana was not true, but rather, “I consider him one of the founder fathers.”
Contributing to a panel discussion on Radio Gold’s ‘Alhaji and Alhaji’, Saturday, the renowned journalist appreciated President Akufo-Addo for ‘starting the debate’ as far as the history of the country is concerned.
He said it is an opportunity to mobilise people who will stand against the ‘rewriting of history’.
“Political parties and others need to come together to stand against all those who are determined to rewrite the history of the country. That is why I recommend strongly that this year September 21; founder’s day should become the rallying point for all progressives in Ghana. Wherever we are, we need to come together and demonstrate in numbers and strength to show that no matter what they (government) do, our founder’s day is 21st September and it will never change no matter who is in power.
“I want to thank President Nana Akufo-Addo and his government for starting this debate . . . it’s a debate that we welcome, it is a debate that we will participate in and it is a debate that we will win. We are participating in this debate not to divert attention from the economic woes of our country; not to divide the country but we are participating in this debate to unite the working people of this country . . . to create the conditions for people to own the gold that is produced here . . . and we are convinced that we are on the side of the true facts and we cannot be defeated in this enterprise.”
The Big Six were six leaders of the UGCC. They were detained by the colonial authorities in 1948 following disturbances leading to the killing of three World War II veterans.
Ebenezer Ako-Adjei, Edward Akufo-Addo, Joseph Boakye Danquah, Kwame Nkrumah, Emmanuel Obetsebi-Lamptey and William Ofori Atta made up the Big Six.
However Kwesi Pratt says there ‘was no big six in our history’.
“We often make reference to the so called big six; what is big six? They became big six not because they were the founders of the UGCC; they were not the founders of the UGCC. They became the big six because they were the people who were arrested by the colonial authority and blamed for the 1948 riots. If you read the historical records, all the five others denied having anything to do with the 1948 riots; it was only Nkrumah who took political responsibility of what had happened. So there was no big six in our history; it was only one big one and small five. So where is this big six coming from?” he queried.