After Near Diplomatic Row At Independence Square
Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe, yesterday inside the Flagstaff House, described Ghana’s first President Kwame Nkrumah, as a true revolutionist, who fought for the emancipation of Ghana and Africa.
Yesterday’s meeting was the second time in one week, that President Mugabe, had to emphasise President Nkrumah towering personality and commitment to liberation of Ghana and the emancipation of the African continent to President Akufo-Addo.
The Zimbabwean leader had on Monday tried to draw Akufo-Addo’s attention to Kwame Nkrumah’s greatness even before the Ghanaian President resumed his seat having attempted to project his uncle, Joseph Boakye Dankwa popularly called J.B. Dankwa over President Nkrumah.
Flagstaff House source told The Herald that President Akufo-Addo, was unhappy about President Mugabe briefly preventing him from sitting down just to stress the importance of President Kwame Nkrumah, to him and tried but to no avail to free his hands from the aged Zimbabwean leader.
Mr. Akufo-Addo in anniversary speech on Monday also tried to bring to the fore, the contributions his biological father and another maternal uncle; Edward Akufo-Addo and William Ofori Atta, popularly called “Paa Willie” respectively, and were both peers of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah in the “Big Six”.
President Mugabe, at yesterday’s encounter with President Akufo-Addo inside the Flagstaff House, suggested Dr. Nkrumah is far and above J.B. Dankwa and others.
He used the opportunity to pay glowing tribute to the late Ghanaian leader, adding that he sees qualities of Ghana’s first President in President Akufo-Addo. Mugabe said he upholds the teachings of Nkrumah in high esteem saying “I preached Nkrumah.”
He further praised Dr. Nkrumah for assisting some African countries to gain independence.
Mr. Mugabe was part of other African leaders who graced Ghana’s 60th Independence Day parade in Accra on 6th March 2017. Mr. Mugabe is connected to Ghana in many ways as he once taught as a teacher in Ghana, and got a Ghanaian wife.
The Zimbabwean leader’s comment comes on the back of criticisms by a section of Ghanaians who argued that President Akufo-Addo’s speech at the Black Star Square sought to skew Ghana’s history to favour his political lineage as against the Nkrumah narrative.
But the President’s spokesperson, Mustapha Hamid, has rejected claims that the President tried to skew Ghana’s history to favour his father, Edward Akufo-Addo, and uncle, J.B. Dankwa, who also played a key role in the fight for independence.
Zimbabwe’s Presidential Spokesperson and Information, Media and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary, George Charamba, earlier told the media that Ghana was a torch bearer of African independence.
“For us, Ghana is a symbol of African freedom struggles and independence and by going back to Ghana, His Excellency is associating himself with the politics and persuasion of Ghana in the context of Africa’s struggles for independence. Secondly, the President had a teaching stint in Ghana soon after its independence, so there is an emotional attachment to his return there besides the marital factor.
Because of the President’s presence in Ghana at that critical time, he became a vector through which Ghana’s pan-African politics and instruments of the struggle were introduced into nationalist politics in the then Rhodesia,” he added.
Meanwhile, JB Dankwa has been captured in Richard D. Mahoney’s book; “JFK: Ordeal in Africa” as a CIA funded agent who worked with the Americans President Kwame Nkrumah leading eventually to his overthrow in the February of 1966.