Nkrumah like many Africans of his generation wasn’t exactly sure when he was born as his birth was not recorded. Incidents in the community and the records of a local priest however led him to adopt 18th September 1909 as his birthday.
He was born on a Saturday which is certain for he was given the name of Saturday’s child, Kwame.
Kwame was born to a goldsmith father in the extreme south-west of Ghana, Nkroful. This helped him benefit from upbringing in both a traditional setting and an opportunity to attend school. In 1935, he left his home in the Gold Coast to study in the United States of America at the age of 26, a practise by many young educated West Africans of his generation.
For a decade, he remained in the USA to study, do research and work and was able to earn a Bachelor of Theology, Masters of Science in Education and Masters of Art in Philosophy degree.
Nkrumah in 1945 went to London where he drafted the “Declaration of the Colonial Peoples of the World” as he helped George Padmore in organizing the fifth Pan-African Congress.
He would later in 1947 return home to become more engaged in active politics and thus in 1949 formed the Convention People’s Party. Nkrumah said that with all politically instigated struggles, there came rare moments that were quite hard to distinguish but fatal to let out when all were set upon a hazard and when out of a simple man is strength ordained. This was during his speech announcing the formation of the new party.
Nkrumah was both a visionary and a prolific writer who was able to addressed most of Africa’s contemporary challenges in his books. These included The Struggle Continues, the classic I Speak of Freedom and finally Africa Must Unite.
In this article am going to look at Africa Must Unite. Kwame Nkrumah in this book spells out the strategy and policy for a united African state. His deep conviction was that unless African countries united in all levels, that is economic, political and defence fronts, the continent and its people would have no true freedom and prosperity that would put it in level grounds to the likes of the first world countries for instance United States of America.
The book is divided up into twenty-one chapters of which the opening chapter gives an overview of the African society. The second chapter follows up with an insightful analysis of the colonial experience and its impact on the continent. He then goes on to examine the role of the intellectual vanguard in the political struggle for independence.
After that, he further delves to build up his case for African unity as he looks at the problems of sovereignty in specific Ghana’s experience in its struggle for sovereignty.
Nkrumah contentment is that neo-colonialism is a threat to the viability of the newly acquired independent states of Africa. He also further cites the former Soviet Union and the United States of America as examples of states in the world with major unions.
We see him in the final chapter describe what he terms as “Continental Government for Africa” as well as arguments in support for the same.