Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has blamed Ghana’s first leader, Kwame Nkrumah, for virtually killing democracy during his reign.
The former President who governed from 2001 to 2009 told the leadership of the International Democratic Union (IDU) which paid a courtesy call on him at his office in Accra, that ex-President Nkrumah almost plunged the country into poverty and chaos.
According to him, by 1963, “our then President Nkrumah, left of centre politician, moved the country into a one-party state with a lot of intolerance; he built a whole prison just 22 miles of Accra for detention of political opponents.
“Democracy as we are espousing was virtually killed…by 1966 the country had had too much and it was labouring under poverty it had never known before,” Mr. Kufuor said.
The former NPP leader added that country was “labouring under intolerance and people were not allowed to express themselves [under President Nkrumah]…”
The former President added that Ghana only stable after 1992 when democracy was introduced.
The IDU is in Ghana to hold its Executive and Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Meeting in Accra from today to Wednesday, June 21, 2017.
The meeting, which is being held for the first time in Africa, South of the Sahara, is being hosted by the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Formed in 1983, the IDU provides a forum for parties that hold similar beliefs to come together and exchange views on matters of policy and organisational interest so that they could learn from one another, act together, establish contacts and speak with one strong voice to promote democracy and centre-right policies around the globe.
Founder members of the IDU included Britain’s Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher; then US Vice-President George Bush Sr; Paris Mayor and later President of France Jacques Chirac, German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and many other party leaders.