This paper looks at the recent history of Ghana and explains the series of events that led up to Ghana's independence in 1957. The paper specifically discusses the effects of colonization in terms of economic and social development and the cultural tensions and tribal divisions in the newly independent Ghana. The paper then looks at the current population and government and concludes that while Ghana is still very much a developing country, Ghana is significantly better off than its West African peers.
From the Paper
"The country of Ghana was the first dependent African country to achieve independence. Various factors contributed to the effective push for independence. These factors included constitutional reform as a means by which to slowly erode British influence, the stirring of the masses by African political elites, and the general post-WWII concern over colonization and its destructive forces. Growing nationalist sentiment unleashed itself in the riots of 1948, though the consequences of such violence sent a message to the British and promoted a more controlled and systematic push towards independence. Under the leadership of Mr. Kwame Nkrumah, a bright and devoted politician, Ghana found its way towards independence through relatively bloodless means."
Sub-Saharan Africa began its journey of decolonization in 1956 when the Sudan won independence after the Egyptian revolution in 1952 (Findley/Rothney 387). One of the first African countries to gain independence was Ghana, in 1957. Ghana is located in West Africa near the equator and on the Greenwich meridian. The colonial power that ruled Ghana until their day of independence was Britain. The Portuguese were the first to arrive and they named the place where they settled the Gold Coast. This became the name of the country till independence when it was changed to Ghana. The British were not the first Europeans to arrive in Ghana but they were the last to leave. The capital of Ghana was moved from Cape Coast to Accra by the British in 1876.
The beginning struggle for independence began in the mid 40s when a British Civil Service and Legislative Council was established. This group called many of the Ghana people to fight Britain's wars in Europe and North Africa. This they did with valor and great courage, only to be denied compensation and benefits upon their return to the Gold Coast. This single act began the beginning of the end for the British in Ghana (Brody Since the 1950s and 1960s, especially after independence, Ghana has joined numerous world-wide and regional organizations, e.g. the United Nations Organizations (UNO), International Labour Organization (ILO), World Health Organization (WHO), Organization of African Unity (OAU) (now transformed into African Union – AU), the Economic Commission of West African States (ECOWAS) and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) respectively. This has been done in a bid to demonstrate her interest in being integrated into the world or African communities and to allow for integration into Ghana of foreign nationals.
Before Ghana attained her independence the peoples who now form Ghana were used to the running of states, empires and kingdoms. These peoples co-existed and were bonded by kinship and principles. The arbitrary borders drawn by colonialists only succeeded in forming artificial a multiethnic nation Ghana. Ghana lacks the internal political cohesion that is absolutely necessary for her survival as a nation. It lacks the moral core that would otherwise be provided by ethnicity, thus the ingredient required for constructing one nation with local roots. There are competing ethnic nationalisms that are hardly prepared to relinquish their hold onto their freedoms and self-determination. Apart from this reluctance to let go their grip on their valued raison d’être as independent peoples, certain ethnic groups believe that they are superior to others, thus making consensus-building...
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