Thursday, December 27, 2018

Colonial “Freedom"! (1964)

The oppression in Ghana worsens almost daily. A judge there has been dismissed for bringing in a verdict which displeased President Nkrumah, and the acquitted prisoner has been re-arrested under the Preventive Detention Acts. He’ll be lucky to get out in ten years.

The president is not resting there, however. He is seeking by referendum to confirm his dismissal powers, and it’s a fair bet he will get his way because opposition to his wishes is a punishable offence. Then one more nail will have been driven into the coffin of whatever limited political democracy once existed.

We cannot help remembering at a time like this that we were urged to support the struggle for the establishment of Ghanaian independence, and it was the Movement for Colonial Freedom who assured us that it would hasten the removal of the old colonial yoke and the birth of democracy. The Socialist Party was not popular because we refused our support, but our arguments are the same now as then, and subsequent developments have proved the soundness of our stand.

So let us repeat that colonial freedom means freedom for the rising native ruling class. The workers in Ghana and elsewhere are becoming painfully aware that they have changed their white bosses for ones with darker skins, that is all. It is no part of our job to encourage the establishment of capitalism, whether democratic or dictatorial. Our aim is a world of Socialism, and then democracy in the fullest sense of the word will be a reality.

The Movement for Colonial Freedom is obviously not a Socialist body, but even the limited freedom which they hoped for in Ghana has not emerged. It is a time for them to eat their words. But more than that, it is a time for them to seriously consider the case for Socialism.

Eddie Critchfield

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