Dr. Clement Apaak, Member of Parliament for Builsa South and a deputy ranking member on Parliament’s Education Committee says a suggestion to rename the University of Ghana after J.B. Danquah was unnecessary and a potential divisive move.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the university’s 75th anniversary thanksgiving last Friday suggested that the university could possibly be renamed after J.B. Danquah as a tribute to his unwavering determination and pivotal role in galvanizing the Ghanaian populace to establish the university.
President Akufo-Addo said but for the polarised political environment in Ghana, naming the school after the man he said was the founder “would not have been out of place.”
President Akufo-Addo was speaking on Friday, August 11, 2023 as the special guest of honour at the 75th Anniversary Thanksgiving Service of the UG.
He highlighted J.B. Danquah’s pivotal role in Ghana’s by rallying Ghanaians to establish a university.
“Indeed, in many other jurisdictions where there is less heat in their politics and more attachment to the fact of historical record, it would not have been out of place to have this university named after him (JB Danquah). Who knows, one day it may weli happen,” President Akufo-Addo said.
He said “it will be wholly appropriate and not far-fetched to describe Joseph Boakye Danquah as the founder of this institution (UG), a fact that on the 75th anniversary of its existence it should be vividly recalled by all who are being and are the beneficiaries of his work.”
Clement Apaak’s response
But reacting in a radio interview with Accra based Citi FM, Dr Clement Apaak said during his tenure in office, President Akufo-Addo has consistently aimed at giving his forefathers a prominent place in Ghanaian history.
“Remember that J.B. Danquah belongs to the president’s family and this is not the first time that we have picked up signals that if the president has his way, UG will be named after J.B. Danquah.”
“I believe that ought not to be the case. There is a general tendency that we are witnessing where President Akufo-Addo has tried to eulogise his ancestry and to give his forebears a prominent place in Ghana’s history,” he stated.