The government has commenced work on the rehabilitation and modernisation of the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park in Accra as part of the Ghana Tourism Development Project.
This is the first time the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park will see a face-lift since its construction.
The project is expected to be completed in nine months.
The US$3-million project include the building of a new presidential library, a training centre, a new restaurant and a VVIP lounge.
Others are an artistic freedom wall and a music and light fountain to boost night tourism at the park.
Funding for the rehabilitation was provided by the World Bank under the Ghana Tourism Development Project.
The Tourism Development Project is a key part of efforts to grow the Ghanaian economy.
The tourism sector is the third largest contributor to GDP.
To grow the economy faster, create sustainable employment, and develop communities, the government is stimulating the sector to enable it play its role.
Although the park is supposed to be a tourist attraction, maintenance of the facility has not been encouraging, resulting in its poor state.
On May 27, this year, the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture closed the park until further notice for major renovation works.
During the launch of Destination Ghana, one of the government’s flagship projects in the tourism sector, in London, United Kingdom, on 3 April 2022, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo had announced that this year alone the government would spend about US$25 million to upgrade some of the country’s iconic sites, including the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park.
Built in 1991 by the Jerry Rawlings-led Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) government, the park, which sits at the Old Polo Grounds and covers an area of 5.3 acres, is where Ghana’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, flanked by his comrades in the Convention People’s Party (CPP) — Kojo Botsio, Komla Agbeli Gbedemah, Archie Casely- Hayford and Krobo Edusei — declared Ghana’s independence on March 6, 1957 before a huge ecstatic crowd.
It is the final resting place of the ex-President and his wife, Fathia Nkrumah, and hosts rare artefacts relating to Ghana’s independence.
The remains of the ex-President, which were originally interred in his home town, Nkroful in the Western Region, were moved to the mausoleum that was constructed at the park.
The Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, who cut the sod for the official commencement of work yesterday[July 19, 2022], said when completed, the project was expected to create an additional 50 direct jobs.
Furthermore, he said, it would help boost domestic and international tourism and improve the country’ rating as an investment and trade destination.
He indicated that tourism, arts and culture had the potential to contribute significantly to national development and job creation.
Below are some of the pictures from an official ceremony to kickstart work at the Memorial Park: