Ghana marks its 57th Independence Anniversary Thursday with colourful parades across the country. The Black Star Square in Accra will be the centre of attraction as President John Dramani Mahama addresses a national parade of schoolchildren and contingents of security personnel.
This is the second time he will be addressing the national parade as President and Commander-in-chief of the Ghana Armed Forces.
Similar parades will be held in all district and regional capitals where representatives of the president will take the national salute and read the Head of State’s speech.
Key concerns raised over the years have to do with the relevance of the celebration, especially when thousands of schoolchildren are at the mercy of the sun.
“Building a Better and Prosperous Ghana through patriotism and National Unity” is the theme for the celebrations which started on February 28 with wreath-laying in remembrance of the victims of the Christianborg Crossroads Shooting incident in 1948—one of the catalysts for the struggle for independence.
Apart from the independence parade,schoolchildren play key roles in the celebrations —the finals of the schools debate came off on March 3, 2014 and presentation of President’s Award to students who excelled in the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) last year is scheduled for today.
Various religious denominations also took turns to pray for the country from last
Friday to Sunday.
That aside, entertainment is not left out of the independence anniversary programme. Tonight, the re-enactment of the declaration of independence will evoke memories and emotions at the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial, the original spot where Dr Nkrumah made his famous declaration that tied Ghana’s umbilical cord to the rest of Africa.
At the National Theatre tomorrow evening,a rib-wrecking comedy entitled “the Second Coming of Nkrumah” that chronicles the travails of Ghana through the years is a must watch.
That aside, the various beaches and entertainment spots across the country will be bursting with revellers keen on releasing stress.
From a West African Country known as the Gold Coast before independence, Ghana rose to become a torch bearer of African liberation—a struggle that ended 113 years of British colonial rule. The country’s independence on March 6, 1957, the first in sub-Saharan Africa, became a rallying point for other African countries to demand freedom from colonial rule.
The declaration of independence on March 6 is significant in a number of ways –it was the same day on which the Bond of 1844 was signed. It also officially liberated the chiefs and people of the Gold Coast from the legal effects of the bond.
According to historical accounts, March 6 was chosen as it was the same day the Bond of 1844 was signed.