Sunday, June 14, 2009


Though Nkrumah's Big Push was over all a disasterous fiasco there were some worthwhile elements of his programm. These generally came in the early days of before the big push. In particular, the Volta River Dam is generally perceived to be a good thing for Ghana and its neighbours. In part the Dam was more beneficial than anticipated because of the unepected increase in petroleum prices in the 1970s.The harbor and the port at Tema has also been a boon to Ghana. Nkrumah at first focussed on infrastructure projects and these tended to be small, worthwhile projects. For example , until 1957 the only way to cross the Volta River was by wy of ferries such as the one below.
In 1957 the first bridge was built for crossing the Volta. Later Nkrumah and his plan began to think in terms of grandiose programs of economic development.

Parrallel with these grandiose plans Nkrumah permitted a personality cult to developsuch that a person coukd be punished for doubting that Nkrumah was immortal.
Government officials took bribes and emblezzed state funds. This included Nkrumah himelf. He was found to have about 5$ million in hidden bank accounts.
The rhetoric of his regime was socialism , but the officials who were spouting socialist slogans were acquiring expensive foreign cars.One officials wife was found to have ordered a gold-plated bed costing about 5,000 $.