Former Rector of the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), Professor Stephen Adei, has argued that despite Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s good works in his first ten years, he eventually turned into one of the worst Ghanaian leaders.
Speaking on Citi FM’s “Time With The Legends” segment on the Citi Breakfast Show, Professor Adei acknowledged that Dr. Nkrumah’s first 10 years in power were brilliant, from a development standpoint, but further said the post-republic Nkrumah was “our undoing,” adding that Nkrumah was sidetracked by socialist philosophies.
Professor Adei said Nkrumah at a point could be likened to Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe.
“Despite the first decade of Nkrumah’s wonderful period, he was one of the worst leaders – murderous, despotic and everything else.”
He stated that Dr. Nkrumah’s dictatorial turn was counterproductive for the country, undoing the good work of his first 10 years while ushering in an economic crisis in Ghana in 1963.
“If you look at Ghana between 1963 and 1964, every macro economic variable came to a halt; Inflation, deficit, external balances – everything! the only thing that was strong in those years was operations.”
Prof. Adei who is believed to be an authority on leadership, also described Africa’s leadership as worse than the dictatorships that characterized the rise of the likes of the Lee Kuan Yews-led Singapore, which muzzled all opposition and dissent.
“They are worse than iron fists. They may not be harsh brutal killing people but they are stealing money doing everything else. In fact, our people are strong in the wrong direction.”
He noted that the Asian leaders in the mold of Lee Kwan Yew were “effective leaders but not angels” adding they were equipped with leadership qualities and passionate about their countries never seeking personal gain.
“They were very passionate about the development of their countries. They had vision, they had an agenda”, unlike leaders like the former President John Rawlings who had time (19 years) but not the leadership qualities and capacity of the “Lee Kwan Yew’s and the rest” to effect meaningful change, he pointed out.