Government has officially declared Monday, January 7, 2019 as Constitution Day and will be observed as a public holiday nationwide.
A press release dated December 27 and signed by the Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery has stated.
Earlier this month, legislation was laid in parliament on government’s proposal of new holidays to be observed in the country.
Government sought to amend the public holiday Act 2001 (Act 601) with the introduction of the ‘Constitution Day’ to be observed on January 7.
The amendment also proposed that the Africa Union day, marked on May 25, and Republic Day on July 1 be made commemorative days.
January 7, 1993, was the day the current Constitution came into force for the Fourth Republic of Ghana. This was after its approval at a Referendum held on April 28, 1992.
January 7 is also the day new Heads of State are sworn into office.
The memo from the Interior Ministry said it was worth setting aside January 7 as Constitution Day “to acknowledge our collective efforts as a country in ensuring that the tenets of democracy, the rule of law and the principles of constitutionalism are upheld.”
Founder’s to founders’
The birthday of Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkrumah, on September 21, was initially Founder’s Day, sparking debate over whether other contributors to Ghana’s independence were being sidelined.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) government in 2012, first earmarked September 21, Kwame Nkrumah’s birthday
In President Nana Akufo-Addo’s proposal, September 21 will now be observed as Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Day.
The Presidency’s statement at the time said August 4, is “obviously the most appropriate day to signify our recognition and appreciation of the collective efforts of our forebears towards the founding of a free, independent Ghana.”
CPP shoots down Nana Addo’s August 4 holiday; threatens to fight it
The Convention People’s Party (CPP) described the new proposed August 4 holiday as inconsistent with the history of the country.
The CPP said the most dangerous part of the public holiday amendment bill is the “disingenuous tinkering of the settled history of Ghana” on the part of the NPP government
In a memo sent to parliament and signed by the General Secretary of the party, James Kwabena Bomfeh Jnr, the CPP further accused government of “creating an erroneous impression with regards to our history of the country after proposing the public holiday amendment bill 2018.”
We will resist Gov’t’s new holidays – Minority
The Minority in Parliament is also mobilizing a broad-based coalition to put pressure on the government to withdraw the Public Holidays Amendment Act.
According to Minority Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the latest amendment amounts to disrespect of the legacy of Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first president.
The North Tongu MP, in an interview, said the minority will vehemently resist the attempt by government to have the holidays changed.
“It is important to serve notice to the government that the Ghanaian people will not be insulted. Our history will not be revised. We will not accept this fascist, familiar attempt to revise the history of our country.
President Akufo-Addo should know that he is really playing with fire and he is going to be faced with the kind of resistance that his government has never witnessed nor experienced.
There is going to be a series of resistance. There are some things you will not touch. We would have thought that Akufo-Addo will stay on his manifesto promises which he has so far failed to deliver on. The abysmal performance that he has so far exhibited,” he said.