President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Wednesday inaugurated a GH₡2.2million Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Centre in honour of Dr Joseph Boakye Danquah at Kyebi, in Eastern Region.
The imposing edifice — “J.B Dankwa Memorial Centre” — which is partly sponsored by Huawei Technologies, Ghana, is expected to provide ICT education and training for the people in Akyem Abuakwa.
Speaking at the official opening of the Memorial Centre, President Akufo-Addo said even though J.B. Danquah never exercised executive authority in the state, his influence on Ghanaian history had been truly astonishing, and felt in all areas of Ghanaian national life — constitutional, cultural, economic, educational, intellectual, moral, political and religious.
The President said it was not improbable to say that, J.B. Danquah’s memory would continue to live, at least, for as long as this nation of Ghana lives.
“He gave our country its name, Ghana, after years of research into the history and traditions of the people of the Gold Coast. He fought, first, for the union of the geographical entity we now call Ghana and then, he fought for Ghana to be established as a free, independent state.
Finally, he fought to defend the liberties of the Ghanaian people, by insisting on a democratic system of government, under the rule of law, as the best form of government for independent Ghana. It was in the course of this, the last of his phenomenal labours, that this Ghanaian colossus literally gave his life in cruel imprisonment, without trial, at Nsawam Prison.”
Dr. J.B. Danquah, described as the doyen of Ghanaian politics, was an Educationist, freedom fighter, historian, journalist, jurist, philosopher, playwright, poet, scholar, statesman and theologian.
President Akufo-Addo indicated that several key institutions of the country owe their inception directly to his work — the Cocoa Marketing Board; the University of Ghana, Legon; the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi; the Bank of Ghana; Ghana Commercial Bank and Accra Sports Stadium, amongst others.
President Akufo-Addo thanked the Chinese government for its continuing solidarity with the government and nation, and the Chinese company, Huawei, for the exceptional gesture in the memoryy and honour of Dr. J.B. Danquah.
Dr Joseph Boakye Danquah was a member of the legendary “Big Six”, together with Emmanuel Obetsebi Lamptey, Edward Akufo-Addo, Ebenezer Ako Adjei, William Ofori-Atta and Kwame Nkrumah, who are rightfully acknowledged as the founding fathers of Ghana.
The Chinese Ambassador, H.E. Wang Shiting, who was there to grace the occasion, said China was ready to partner Ghana to develop it and move it beyond aid.