GHANA Country in Western Africa, formerly a British colony. 1957—1st black nation in sub-Saharan Africa to achieve independence. Population: divided into 75 different ethnic groups—agricultural economics also have gold, diamonds, manganese ore, natural gas, fishing (Atlantic Ocean) and bauxite. The northern two-thirds of the country is covered by savanna—grassland with scattered trees. Dominated by the Portuguese, Dutch, and British Colony was part of the Gold Coast Rapid political development began only after WWII, when British forces began to allow some self-government. British Parliament in January 1957 passed the Ghana Independence Act. National Assembly of Ghana issued an independence proclamation 2 days later it joined the United Nations INDEPENDENCE The Great Depression (1930’s) and WWII (1939-1945) greatly hamper Pan-Africanism Early 1940’s Kwame Nkrumah (native of British-ruled Gold Cost—Ghana) establishes in the United States—African Student Organization. Influenced by Karl Marx Organized the Pan-African Congress in 1945. Returned to Ghana in 1947. Secretary to the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) a nationalist party Starts his own party: The Convention People’s Party (CPP) 1948 organized a boycott of foreign products that lead to riots. He is arrested an imprisoned by British ruler 1948 Nkrumah splits with UGCC—sees them as too conservative for independence 1950 Organizes a series of boycotts and colony wide strikes that severely hurts the colonies—is imprisoned again. 1951 the CPP win most of the seats in the Colonial legislative council—he is still in prison 1951 Nkrumah is released from prison and named Leader of Government Business. 1952 named Prime Minister 1954 and 1956 he is reelected Prime Minister 1957 guides the Gold Coast in independence under the new name Ghana The Nkrumah Years Built a strong central government Proponent of Pan-Africanism wanted to build a United States of Africa—did not “fly” Took aid from USA and Soviets but had a philosophy of nonalignment with either nation 1960 elected President of Ghana 1961-1966 hydroelectric project on the Volta River Passed laws that allowed him to imprison political opponents without charge Dismissed the national supreme court and pronounced himself judge Took bribes for favors from businesses Assassinations attempts in 1962 and 1964 made him grow more and more paranoid 1966 visits China—while he is out his government is overthrown Exiled to Guinea 1972 dies in Romania – throat cancer EVALUATION Dichotomy o Hero of African nationalism o One of Africa’s first postcolonial dictators Positive achievements 1. Ghana independence and help to other African countries to gain independence. 2. He was a prolific writer.