A Senior Lecturer at the University of Ghana, Dr. Lawrence Boakye, has challenged the government and the entire nation to use this year’s Founders’ Day celebrations as a period to reflect on the trajectory of the country.
He said Ghanaians must use it as a platform to reflect on their aspirations, challenges, and visions.
“Our Founders Day celebration comes with a clarion call to ask ourselves some vital questions regarding our country Ghana. As a people what are our aspirations, what do we lack as a nation, what is our vision for Mother Ghana,” he said
Dr. Boakye made the call on Friday (August 4, 2023), while delivering a lecture on the topic; “ African Nationalism: A Road to Patriotism and the Attainment of Self-Determination” in Accra.
The lecture series was organised by the Danquah Institute, a political think tank interested in research and advocacy, as part of the Founders’ Day celebrations.
Founder’s Day is a public holiday used to celebrate the birthday of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah—Ghana’s first president and the founding fathers of Ghana at the same time.
Dr. Boakye said in order for the nation to enkindle its passion for contributing magnanimously to national development and progress, people must resort to patriotic values.
He explained that, as a people, “when we lack these values, we tend to throw our own destiny into chaos, dishonesty, apathy, and dismay thereby turning back our clock of development”.
He also stressed the essence of patriotism and the attainment of self-determination using Africa’s perspective of nationalism, history of colonial oppression, and the long struggle for independence by citing examples from Mali, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa amongst others to buttress his points.
Dr Boakye further stated that the likes of the big six were fuelled by their patriotism and love for the nation, adding that they were willing to sacrifice everything and risked their lives for the country.
“Today as we celebrate these courageous compatriots, we reflect on their heroism, sacrifice, leadership, the restoration of patriotism, and the establishment of the foundation of our democracy,” he said.
Therefore, he called on the nation to allow itself to be driven by the resilience of past leaders, who the day seeks to celebrate, to awaken their civil consciousness, their desire for identity, freedom, unity, self-determination, and the restoration of the spirit of patriotism.
Dr. Boakye added that our self-determination and patriotism, as a people, were integral to the realisation of the nation’s political, social, and economic freedoms.
“It is only through the realisation of this very basic right of people to determine, with no compulsion or coercion, holding onto their own future, political status, and independence that we can begin to address other important factors such as dignity, justice, progress, and equity,” he explained further.