Sunday, June 14, 2009

Ghana, decline and fall of Nkrumah

Nkrumah hall at the University of Dar esSalaam indares Salaam, Tanzania.
The year 1954 was a pivotal year during the Nkrumah era. In that year's independence elections , he won. However , that same year the price of cocoa rose from 150 pounds to 450 pounds per ton. But the increase in revenue cocoa farmers didnot get any benifit and the increased revenue was invested into various national development projects. This policy lienated him from one of te major constitutencies that helped him come to power.
In 1958 Nkrumah introduced legislation to restrict various freedom s in Ghana. After the Gold Miner's strike of 1955, he introduced the Trade Union Act,making strikes illegal. he also introduced Preventive Detention Act to arrest any suspected person without due process of law.
When the Railway workers went on strike in 1961, he ordered all of them arrested under the The Trade Union Act of 1958. He ordered that workers had to work with the management to mobilise human resources without any grievances.
The Detention Act led to widespread disffection with Nkrumah's administration. some of his associates used the law to arrest innocent people to acquire their political offices and business assets. Some people believed that he no longer cared. in 1964, he proposed a constitutional amendment making the CPP the only legal party and himself president for life of both nation and party.The amendment passed over 99 % of the vote-which was only possible through fraud.
Nkrumah's advocacy of industrial development at any cost was a disaste.He undergone heavy debt to construct a hydroelectric power plant in Akosombo Dam on the volta River caused ruin to the country.dam was comleted and he opened it on 22 jan. 1966. it seemed that he rose to the zenith of his power.He made his army strong with modern aircrafts, ships etc. he helped fighting the Smith administration in Zimbabwe, then called Rhodesia.
In feb. 966, he went to vietnam for official tour but his government was overthrown by a military coup, which was claimed by some as backed by CIA.
Memorial to Nkrumahin Accra