You are here: HomeNews2021 09 21Article 1362118

General News of Tuesday, 21 September 2021


Afrifa was an imperialist agent used to topple Nkrumah – Uganda President writes

Kwame Nkrumah was ousted in a 1966 coup that ended the First Republic Kwame Nkrumah was ousted in a 1966 coup that ended the First Republic

• Nkrumah's overthrow was the act of imperialist elements

• The 1966 coup brought an end to the First Republic

• Gen. Afrifa was one of the architects along with Kotoka

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda has classed former military ruler General Akwasi Amankwaa Afrifa as a pawn that imperialist elements employed to topple Ghana’s first President Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.

Museveni said Afrifa and his cohorts had overthrown Nkrumah at a time the latter was busily championing an independence fight in southern Africa.

According to him, instead of allowing them to derail the independence mission, it became imperative to fight the likes of Afrifa and others like Mobutu Sese Seko of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eyadema of Togo and Idi Amin of his native Uganda.

“Were we wrong to take up arms against Idi Amin? Not at all. This is because Idi Amin and his fellow golpists in Africa, were almost all of them agents of anti-African interests. We were calling them reactionaries and puppets of foreign interests.

“Who were they? They were the following: Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga, Eyadema of Togo, Afrifa of Ghana, Bokassa of Central Africa Republic, Habyarimana of Rwanda, etc etc.,” he wrote in a September 15, 2021 statement on current coups in Africa – case in point Mali and Guinea.

He continued: “What proof do we have that they were agents of foreign interests and against our destiny? When Afrifa overthrew Mzee Nkrumah, the latter had either proposed to or had actually sent a reconnaissance group to the Zambezi valley (Zambia side) to participate in the confrontation against Ian Smith in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe).

“I remember, that in one of his speeches, Afrifa actually cited this as one of the reasons for overthrowing Mzee Nkrumah. After that, Ghana withdrew completely from the anti-colonial struggle and yet, hitherto, she had been the pointsman in the anti-colonial struggle,” he added.

He opined that even in the wake of the loss of Nkrumah to the struggle by way of the 1966 coup Afrifa and Kotoka undertook, other pan-African leaders – Nyerere, Kenyatta, Khama and Modibo Keita – held the mantle of resistance to colonialism and imperialism.

About the 1966 coup and Afrifa’s politics

While as Commander of the First Infantry Brigade in Kumasi under Lt General Kotoka, the two soldiers planned and masterminded the coup that ended the first republic and overthrew Nkrumah who was absent at the time.

Afrifa is credited with overcoming stiff challenge at the Broadcasting House and holding it for Kotoka to announce the success of the coup.

Lieutenant General Akwasi Amankwaa Afrifa (24 April 1936 – 26 June 1979) was a Ghanaian soldier, farmer, a traditional ruler and politician.

He was the head of state of Ghana and leader of the military government in 1969 and then Chairman of the Presidential Commission between 1969 and 1970.

He handed over power to Dr Busia to kickstart Ghana’s second Republic which was toppled in 1972 by Lt Gen. Ignatius Kutu Acheampong and the National Redemption Council government.

Afrifa was arrested and detained by the NRC regime for the most part of 1972, he was released before going into politics and farming.

In 1979 (16 June), he was picked up from his farm at Mampong and executed by firing squad alongside other top military officials after the 4 June 1979 uprising.

Join our Newsletter