Road to Independence After World War II

April 9, 1951

The four territorial divisions were administered separately until 1946, when the British Government ruled them as a single unit. In 1951, a constitution was promulgated that called for a greatly enlarged legislature composed principally of members elected by popular vote directly or indirectly. An executive council was responsible for formulating policy, with most African members drawn from the legislature and including three ex officio members appointed by the governor.

 

The Big 6

The Big 6

(L-R) Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey, Mr. Ako Adjei, 

Mr. Edward Akuffo-Addo, Dr. J. B. Danquah, Mr. William Ofori Atta

These were the six brave men and leaders of the United Gold Coast Convention (U.G.C.C.) who were arrested and detained under the Emergency Regulation in 1948 during disturbances in the Gold Coast. They were and are gallant men who spearheaded the transition of Ghana from colonialism to Independence on that memorable day the 6th of March, 1957.

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5 Responses to “Road to Independence After World War II”


  1. 1952: New Prime Minister of Gold Coast Elected

    US-educated Dr. Kwame Nkrumah is elected prime minister of the Gold Coast (the British Colony that later becomes Ghana). (BBC 11/4/1997; Encyclopaedia Britannica 2004)


  2. The United Gold Coast Convention Party
    The first political party was formed in August 1947 by Paa Grant, Dr. J.B Danquah and others. It was named the United Gold Coast Convention (U.G.C.C). Its slogan was “Self Government within the Shortest Possible Time”. The U.G.C.C. therefore invited Dr. Kwame Nkrumah home from his studies to become the full-time General Secretary of the Party. The U.G.C.C. had earlier on criticized the Burns Constitution of 1946 introduced by Governor Sir Allan Burns.
    In January 1948, Nii Kwabena Bonne III, a Ga Chief organized a general boycott of all European imports. A series of riots followed the boycott in early February, 1948. The last straw that broke the camel’s back was the famous February 28, 1948 incident. Unarmed ex-servicemen marched to the Christiansborg Castle on that day to submit a petition to the Governor about their poor conditions. Superintendent Imray, a white police officer, ordered the policemen at the castle to shoot. When the police refused to do so, Imray himself opened fire on the unarmed soldiers at the Christiansborg crossroad. Three of the leaders namely; Sergeant Adjetey, Private Odartey Lamptey and Corporal Attipoe fell dead. Thereafter, riots broke out in Accra. European and Asian stores were looted by the angry mob. The rioters forced open the Central Prison and set free its inmates.
    After the riots, the Nationalist leaders in Ghana sent a strong worded cable to the Secretary of State in London. They blamed the Governor, Sir Gerald Creasy, greatly. They called him “Crazy Creasy” because he had failed to handle the problems facing the country. The Secretary of State however blamed the Nationalist leaders for being responsible for the disturbances in the country. Consequently, six of the leading nationalist were arrested and detained. They were popularly referred to as the BIG SIX. These leaders were J.B Danquah, Kwame Nkrumah, Obetsebi Lamptey, Akuffo Addo, William Ofori Atta and Ako Adjei.


  3. The Convention People’s Party (CPP)
    The U.G.C.C. which awakened fervent national consciousness in the Gold Coast was what might be described as a liberal group with its slogan of “Self-government in the shortest possible time.” This attitude did not please Nkrumah who wanted “Self-gov- ernment Now”.
    Following disagreement of ideologies, Kwame Nkrumah left the U.G.C.C. and formed a more radical nationalist party -Convention People’s Party (C.P.P) on June 12th, 1949 with its motto “self-government now”. He was joined by Kojo Botsio, K.A Gbedemah and others.
    On 9th January, 1950 the C.P.P organized a nation-wide boycott and strike for workers and the masses. The people refused to buy all British goods. Workers were warned not to cause any trouble. In the cause of the riots however, two policemen were shot dead. On January 21st 1950, Nkrumah and other leading C.P.P members including Kojo Botsio and K.A. Gbedemah were imprisoned at the James Fort Prison, Accra, on charges arising from pursuing what was termed as “Positive Action” against the Government. The imprisonment of Nkrumah made him a hero and martyr in the eyes of the people.
    In 1951, the pace was set for general elections. Kwame Nkrumah was in prison when the elections were conducted. He overwhelmingly won the elections and was released by the then Governor, Sir Charles Noble Arden-Clark to head the new government. This however became the British Colony’s first African government. In March 1952, Kwame Nkrumah was designated Prime Minister. He was to appoint a cabinet, which was not to be responsible to the Governor but the Assembly.

  4. jeff glenn mcasmah Says:

    may we all light fires hat will keep on burning whe we are o more


  5. we should respect the work we do very well with commitment


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