Free yourself from shackles of NDC – Speaker urges CCP

Prof Mike Oquaye, Speaker of Parliament

Prof Mike Oquaye, Speaker of Parliament

Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, has urged the Convention People’s Party (CPP) to free itself from the shackles of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), if it wants to reclaim its image as a dominant force in Ghana’s politics.

According to the Speaker, the CPP, founded by Ghana’s first President, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, was once a powerful political party in the 50’s but has allowed itself to be “swallowed” by the NDC.

“If the CPP want to survive, they must proceed to extricate themselves from the bowels of the NDC, then they will survive,” he said.

Prof. Oquaye, a former political science lecturer at the University of Ghana, was speaking at a public lecture organised by the Ghana 60 Years On Committee to mark the 70th anniversary of the formation of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC).

Present at the lecture were President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, former president John Agyekum Kufuor, Ivor Kobina Greenstreet, the Presidential Candidate for the CPP in the 2016 election, Benard Mornah of the People’s National Congress, ministers of state, members of the diplomatic corps, and a cross section of the public.

Just as Dr. Nkrumah broke away from the UGCC to form the CPP, he said the New Patriotic Party (NPP) also traced its root from the UGCC, and indicated that the CPP and the NPP belonged to the same political ancestry with solid traditions.

“But the NDC has no tradition,” he said and added that the NDC, one of the youngest political parties in the country, rode to become a dominant political party by poaching the key and brilliant members of the CPP.

Prof. Oquaye said the country’s history had been distorted for political reasons and indicated that the story about the people who founded Ghana had not been told as it should.

According to him, the story that Dr. Nkrumah was the sole founder of independent Ghana was erroneous and indicated that the struggle for independence began as far back as 1897 by John Mensah Sarbah and his compatriots when they formed the Aborigines Rights Protection Society (ARPS).

He said the UGCC also played a significant role in the struggle for independence, bringing down Dr. Kwame Nkrumah who energised the push for Ghana’s independence from British colonial rule.

While acknowledging the significant role Dr. Nkrumah played in Ghana’s independence, he said the CPP founder did not single-handedly win independence for Ghana.

The Speaker noted that the name ‘Ghana’ had already been suggested before independence by people he described as the founding fathers of Ghana.

He stressed the need for Ghanaians to honour and celebrate all the people who played diverse roles in the struggle for independence without giving all the glory to Dr. Nkrumah

On former President John Evans Atta Mills’ decision to declare the birthday of Dr. Nkrumah as the Founder’s Day, he said the late President erred in that decision

He believes the founder accolade should not be conferred on the first president alone, despite his significant contribution, and urged politicians to stop misleading the public.

By Yaw Kyei

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