The National Democratic Congress has promised to restore Republic Day, a 59-year old public holiday which has been cancelled by the Akuffo-Addo government.
A statement signed by NDC Director of Communications Kakra Essumah highlighted the importance of July 1 as a commemoration of the patriotic heroism chalked through Ghana’s first leader President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.
The NDC said the government’s degrading of the July 1 holiday to a “mere commemorative day robs Ghana’s gallant forbears, the historical credit and recognition that they so richly deserve.”
Ghana attained full nationhood on July 1, 1960.
But the Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye in an article in January 2018, argued that the 1960 Republican Constitution was overthrown in 1966.
Since then, there have been four republics. None of them restored a previous constitution. The current republic came into force on January 7, 1993.
Prof. Oquaye argued that it is, therefore, misleading to celebrate a repudiated and short-lived republic while under one that has thrived over 25 years.
The government subsequently introduced the Holidays Amendment Act into Parliament and adopted same after it was passed. January 7 is now observed as a public holiday in recognition of the Fourth Republic, the only existing one.
But the NDC is adamant. The party says President Akufo-Addo is simply elevating the contributions of his family above others in the history of Ghana.
Read the NDC’s full statement below:
REPUBLIC DAY WILL BE RESTORED AS A PUBLIC HOLIDAY
On the occasion of the 59th anniversary of the attainment of Republican status of Ghana, the National Democratic Congress wishes to salute every Ghanaian living everywhere.
When, through the instrumentality of our first President, Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, this feat was achieved on 1st July 1960, it cemented the heroic efforts of the people of Ghana to attain full nationhood and from which Ghana emphasized her predominant role in the struggle to liberate the black race from the shackles of oppression and suppression.
Sadly today, the government of President Nana Addo-Danquah Akufo-Addo has deemed it fit to degrade the importance of this great day from a full public holiday intended to celebrate the efforts of our forebears in our collective struggle to affirm the benefits of equality, liberty, freedom and justice, to a mere commemorative day in order to rob our gallant forbears the historical credit and recognition that they so richly deserve.
The National Democratic Congress has had occasion to criticize President Akufo-Addo’s attempts to rewrite the history of Ghana, downplaying the role of genuine patriots and placing his family and clan above all else.
The NDC would want to assure all Ghanaians living everywhere that upon its assumption of office in January 2021, Republic Day will be accorded full recognition as one of the more important national days in our history. Long live Ghana. Long live the struggle against historical revisionists.