After years of suffering from British Empire colonial rule, the Gold Coast became the first independent state in Africa. Do you know when exactly Ghana gained independence? Continue reading this article to know the most relevant facts.
Ghana is situated on West Africa's Gulf of Guinea. It is a few degrees north of the equator. Before the British Empire conquered it, this territory used to be one of the wealthiest African countries.
Numerous European colonizers led a bitter struggle for this region for a long time. They called this area the Gold Coast because it had extensive gold resources. Finally, by 1901, the entire territory of the Gold Coast had become a British colony.
In 1903, the British seized all Northern areas and Ashanti. The territory of Togoland which was known geographically as “The Gold Coast,” was announced a crown colony.
Struggle for Independence
After the Second World War, the process of decolonization began throughout the world. Many countries started to seek independence. The indigenous population of the Gold Coast also began to demand greater autonomy. Kwame Nkrumah headed all liberation struggle of the peoples of the Gold Coast.
In the early 1940s, the huge movement toward independence started. It happened right after the police fired in Accra on a significant contingent of ex-service men who just quietly carried a petition to the Governor to try to find compensation for their complaints.
In August 1947, chief nationalists led by Joseph Danquah created the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC). After it, they immediately invited Kwame Nkrumah, the future president of Ghana, to top the group's movement for representative self-government.
However, in 1948 after troops fired on protestors and a demonstration broke out, Danquah and Nkrumah were immediately put in prison.
In 1949, the Convention People's Party (CPP), headed by Nkrumah with thousands of farmers and workers for the first time organized in a mass drive for independence.
In 1954, Nkrumah's government introduced a new constitution to provide straight election by universal suffrage. However, the National Liberation Movement opposed this law. NLM severely disapproved CPP for its control on the powers of chiefs. On April 29, 1954, another constitution was approved. Therefore, it allowed establishing a cabinet consisted of African ministers.
In May 1956, Nkrumah's government delivered an exclusive white paper. It contained all the proposals for the independence of Gold Coast. When the considerable part of British Togoland population voted for confederacy with an independent Gold Coast, the British government finally agreed to a fixed date for the country`s independence.
Therefore, on March 6, 1957, the state of Ghana, named after the feudal West African Empire, became a self-governing country within the Commonwealth of Nations.
Nkrumah was sure that his government played an utterly important role in the struggle against capitalist interests on the African continent. He used to repeat this in his numerous speeches.
“The independence of Ghana would be meaningless unless it was tied to the total liberation of Africa. All Ghanaians always wanted freedom. Finally, we gave our people such a perfect opportunity to gain independence.”
When did Ghana gain independence? Now you know the answer to this question. Consequently, Ghana is the opening country in Africa, which gained independence. Nevertheless, having gone through various tempestuous regimes, the people of Ghana did not feel justice, freedom, and democracy until 1966 when Nkrumah’s government was overthrown. In the memory of those times when the golden sand carried out a function of money in the mighty empire of Ghana, the new state was also called Ghana. Since 1957, the Independence Day, celebrated on March 6, has become is the most favorite holiday of all Ghanaian people.
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