Ghana profile

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Ghana profile

Ghana (Republic) is a unitary presidential constitutional democratic country, located in the West African sub-region along the Gulf of Guinea and Atlantic Ocean.  The republic of Ghana is bordered by the Ivory Coast to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, Togo in the east and the Gulf of Guinea and Atlantic Ocean to the south. 

The first permanent state in the territory of present-day Ghana dates back to the 11th century. Numerous kingdoms and empires emerged over the centuries, of which the most powerful was the Kingdom of Ashanti

Beginning in the 15th century, numerous European powers contested the area for trading rights, with the British ultimately establishing control of the coast by the late 19th century. Following over a century of native resistance, Ghana's current borders were established by the 1900s as the British Gold Coast. It became independent of the United Kingdom on 6 March 1957.

Ghana's population of approximately 28 million spans a variety of ethnic, linguistic and religious groups. Five percent of the population practices traditional faiths, 67.2% adhere to Christianity and 23.6% are Muslim. Its diverse geography and ecology ranges from coastal savanna's to tropical rain forests.

Ghana is a democratic country led by a president who is both head of state and head of the government. Ghana's growing economic prosperity and democratic political system have made it a regional power in West Africa. The country is a member of the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Commonwealth of Nations and many other unions. 

Ghana's Independence Journey

In 1947, the newly formed United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) by The Big Six called for "self-government within the shortest possible time" following the Gold Coast legislative election, 1946. Kwame Nkrumah was the first Prime Minister of Ghana and President of Ghana and formed the Convention People's Party (CPP) with the motto "self-government now".

The Big Six of Ghana (Fathers of Independence)

The Big Six were six leaders of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), the leading political party in the British colony of the Gold Coast. They were detained by the colonial authorities in 1948 following disturbances which led to the killing of three World War II veterans.

They were Ebenezer Ako-Adjei, Edward Akufo-Addo, Joseph Boakye Danquah, Kwame Nkrumah, Emmanuel Obetsebi-Lamptey and William Ofori Atta.

Nkrumah won a majority in the Gold Coast legislative election, 1951 for the Gold Coast Legislative Assembly in 1952. Nkrumah was appointed leader of the Gold Coast's government business. The Gold Coast region declared independence from the United Kingdom on 6 March 1957 and established the nation of Ghana.

Ghana's Independence declaration

On 6 March 1957 at 12 a.m. Nkrumah declared Ghana's establishment and autonomy. On 1 July 1960, following the Ghanaian constitutional referendum, 1960 and Ghanaian presidential election, 1960 Nkrumah declared Ghana as a republic as the first President of Ghana. 1 July is now celebrated as Republic Day.

Initiative by Nkrumah after Independence

At the time of independence Nkrumah declared, "My first objective is to abolish from Ghana poverty, ignorance, and disease. We shall measure our progress by the improvement in the health of our people; by the number of children in school, and by the quality of their education; by the availability of water and electricity in our towns and villages; and by the happiness which our people take in being able to manage their own affairs.

The welfare of our people is our chief pride, and it is by this that the government will ask to be judged.". In 1966, a group of military officers overthrew Nkrumah in a coup d’état and placed Ghana under the authority of the National Liberation Council.

The flag of Ghana, consisting of the colours red, gold, green, and a black star, became the new flag in 1957 when Gold Coast gained its name Ghana. It was designed by Theodosia Salome Okoh; the red represents the blood that was shed towards independence, the gold represents the industrial minerals wealth of Ghana, the green symbolises the rich grasslands of Ghana, and the black star is the symbol of the Ghanaian people and African emancipation.

Nkrumah was the first African head of state to promote the concept of Pan-Africanism, which he had been introduced to during his studies at Lincoln University, Pennsylvania in the United States, at the time when Marcus Garvey was becoming famous for his "Back to Africa Movement". Nkrumah merged the teachings of Marcus Garvey, Martin Luther King, Jr. and the naturalised Ghanaian scholar W. E. B. Du Bois into the formation of 1960s Ghana.

Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, as he became known, played an instrumental part in the founding of the Non-Aligned Movement, and in establishing the Kwame Nkrumah Ideological Institute to teach his ideologies of communism and socialism. His life achievements were recognised by Ghanaians during his centenary birthday celebration, and the day was instituted as a public holiday in Ghana (Founder's Day). 

Geography of Ghana

Ghana is located on the Gulf of Guinea, only a few degrees north of the Equator, therefore giving it a warm climate. Ghana spans an area of 238,535 km2 (92,099 sq mi), and has an Atlantic coastline that stretches 560 kilometres (350 miles) on the Gulf of Guinea in Atlantic Ocean to its south.

It lies between latitudes 4°45'N and 11°N, and longitudes 1°15'E and 3°15'W. The Prime Meridian passes through Ghana, specifically through the industrial port town of Tema.

Ghana is geographically closer to the "centre" of the Earth geographical coordinates than any other country; even though the notional centre, (0°, 0°) is located in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 614 km (382 mi) off the south-east coast of Ghana on the Gulf of Guinea.

Grasslands mixed with south coastal shrublands and forests dominate Ghana, with forest extending northward from the south-west coast of Ghana on the Gulf of Guinea in the Atlantic Ocean 320 kilometres (200 miles) and eastward for a maximum of about 270 kilometres (170 miles) with the Kingdom of Ashanti or the southern part of Ghana being a primary location for mining of industrial minerals and timber.

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Ghana profile Ghana profile Reviewed by RRAJ on 11/18/2018 Rating: 5

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