The revelations from the will of the late NPP general secretary and Forestry Commission CEO, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie aka Sir John continues to dominate the headlines. Without doubt, Sir John had the capacity to acquire properties due to his long career as a lawyer but the properties he amassed between 2017 till his death in 2020 is what has shocked many.
Parts of the public lands at Achimota forest and the Ramsar site at Sakumono which are supposed to be protected somehow found themselves in the will of Sir John and it appears he used his position at the Forestry Commission to grab these lands.
Now, the point of this piece is to compare our current crop of leaders who excel in amassing great wealth in the short periods they are in power to Ghana’s first President, Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah who did not own a single room or property in Ghana at his death. This is despite Nkrumah being Prime Minister and President for 9 years and having every chance to enrich himself.
As leader of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah embarked on a drive to provide decent and affordable housing for Ghanaians through the State Housing Corporation.
Nkrumah built the entire Tema township. Built the estates in Labone, Kanda, Osu Ringway, Kaneshie, Airport Residential Area. That was not all, he went on to build more estate houses in the Ashanti region specifically in Buokrom, Patase, Kwadaso, North and South Suntreso.
Now, did you know that Nkrumah after his overthrow and death did not own even a single room anywhere in Ghana?
In fact, on his daughter, Samia Nkrumah’s return to Ghana she had no house to go to because her father who had built houses all over the Ghana owned none. It was a Good Samaritan who offered her place to stay.
Had Nkrumah after building all these housing projects built one or two mansions for himself and his family, could anyone have faulted him?
But Nkrumah truly dedicated himself to serving the people of Ghana and never at any point put his interests above the interests of Ghanaians.
Now, look at our politicians of today and how after just a few months in office, they come to own mansions and all kinds of properties all over.
Today, the selflessness, patriotism and dedicated service of Nkrumah is missing and what we have is leaders who put their personal interests above the national interest.
That is the root of our problem.
Here’s a video presentation of the Selflessness of Kwame Nkrumah