The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has reiterated its justification for the celebration of Founders’ Day on August 4 insisting the day is the most historic day in the country’s quest towards independence.
According to the party, it was in recognition of the inestimable importance of the day that informed President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo through a Legislative Instrument (L.I.) to declare the day not only as a Commemorative Day but also a Public Holiday to remember all gallant heroes and heroines of the independence struggle who, for all intent and purposes, are deserving to be called Founders of Ghana.
A statement issued and signed by Party General Secretary John Boadu in commemoration of the day said it was the day that the first political party was formed to arouse the sense of nationalism among the people.
“The NPP, on the occasion of founders’ day commemoration, is pleased to join the rest of the world to wish all Ghanaians a joyous celebration. August 4, is indeed the most historic day in our struggle for nationhood. It was on this day that the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), the first political movement in the country that awoken the conscience of Ghanaians to strive for independence was founded.
It was this political movement, founded by the legendary J. B. Danquah and George Paa Grant that set the stage for our struggle for independence from the relics of colonial rule. Beyond that, August 4 in the year 1897 is also the day on which the famous Aborigines Rights Protection Society, an important milestone in our match for nationhood and self-determination was birth,” the statement said.
The day, according to the governing party is worth celebrating to among other things remind Ghanaians of the very toils and sacrifices of our forebears in the independence struggle and more importantly to have an introspection on how their virtues can inspire the present and future generation to be patriotic citizens.
The NPP urged Ghanaians to renew their covenant with the nation and reaffirm their commitment and dedication to the national cause.
Meanwhile, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Convention People’s Party (CPP) have both kicked against the celebration of August 4 as Founders’ Day.
According to the two opposition parties, the celebration of the day amounted to a revision of the country’s history.
The NDC has assured Ghanaians that August 4 will be expunged from the statute books as a public holiday as soon as it assumes the reins of government.
The largest opposition party in a statement signed by its Director of Communications, Kakra Essamuah, said it was unfortunate that “the government had legislated into law, the commemoration and celebration of August 4 as a holiday to be called the Founders’ Day, replacing the Founder’s Day that was celebrated in honour of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the architect of Ghana’s independence.”
The CPP also in a statement signed by Acting General Secretary, James Kwabena Bomfeh Jnr., said Ghana as it existed today was knitted into a unitary state with a unicameral parliament from four separate territories through two legislative instruments in the Gold Coast Legislative Assembly and the United Kingdom House of Commons on August 3, 1956 and February 7, 1957 respectively, and was consolidated in the Ghana Independence Act, 1957.
The CPP, on the other hand has said, “The high numbers of the President’s party Members of Parliament (MPs) may have allowed them an easy passage of the bill but they would not have an easy celebration outside Parliament and that this debate would be fought in our homes, farms, schools and workplaces.”