- The Aborigines Rights Protection Society (ARPS) was formed on 4th August, 1897.
It was formed to protect the traditional land tenure practices of the indigenous Gold Coast people from being usurped by the colonial government of Britain.
Some of its Co-founders were John Mensah Sarbah, J.E Casely Hayford, J.W Sey, J.P Brown and others, with some of its Presidents being J.W Sey, J.P Brown and Kobina Sekyi.
- The ARPS developed into the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC).
Reason: Paa Grant, a member of ARPS proposed to Dr. Joseph Boakye Danquah to include some of the former members of ARPS to be part of the newly to be formed UGCC, since they had already started a similar movement.
Note, a very staunch member of ARPS, J.W. Degraft-Johnson was the General Secretary of UGCC as at 6th September, 1947, Kwame Nkrumah only came to take over as its General Secretary from December, 1947 after his trip to Ghana had been fully paid by the members of the UGCC.
Kwame Nkrumah remained its General Secretary until based on some disagreements, he finally left, and together with some like minded people formed a party called the Convention People’s Party (CPP) in June,1949. He remained the leader of CPP from its formation until he was finally overthrown as the President of Ghana in February, 1966.
UGCC was formed on 4th August, 1947, its Leader was Dr J.B Danquah, and the chairman was Paa Grant who was also the biggest financier of the party/movement.
- UGCC developed into Ghana Congress Party (GCP).
After UGCC lost the 1951 election against the CPP, it disintegrated, and some of its member joined GCP. It was formed in June 1952, and its leader was Dr Kofi Abrefa Busia.
- GCP developed into the National Liberation Movement (NLM). NLM is a party which broke away from the CPP due to its dissatisfaction with the CPP government’s treatment of Akans, and some policies such as the opposition of the CPP government to a Federal form of government.
It was formed in 1954, its founder and leader was Okyeame Baffour Akoto, but Dr J.B Danquah led it for elections.
- NLM developed into the United Party (UP) after it came together with some other political parties such as the Northern People’s Party (NPP), Anlo Youth Organisation (AYO), Muslim Association Party (MAP), Togoland Congress, Ga Shifimokpee to form UP.
It was formed in 1957.
The biggest of the parties during the formation of UP was NPP. The leader of NPP was Simon Diedong Dombo, but after the formation of UP, Dr J.B Danquah was the leader, and even led the party into the 1960 presidential election.
Regional groups like NLM, Northern PP, AYO etc were banned through an act in the legislature. After the ban, some members of these groups joined CPP.
The rest regrouped. So UP was a regroup of the opposition.
- UP developed into the Progress Party (PP) after the overthrow of the Kwame Nkrumah led CPP government which was the First Republic of Ghana, by some perceived UP elements led by Lieutenant General Emmanuel Kwasi Kotoka and Brigadier Akwasi Amankwaa Afrifa.
The PP was formed in 1969. Its leader was Dr Abrefa Busia, and as result made Dr Busia the Prime Minister and Edward Akufo Addo the Ceremonial President of Ghana after the August 1969 elections which formed the Second Republic of Ghana.
- PP developed into the Popular Front Party (PFP) after the overthrow of Lieutenant General Fredrick William Kwasi Akuffo.
PFP was formed in 1979, its leader was Victor Owusu. William Ofori Atta didn’t side with the election that made Victor Owusu the leader of the new UP party, and so, he broke away to form his own party called the United National Convention (UNC) of which its General Secretary was Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. Due to this split, UNC is not considered as a legacy of the UP tradition.
After the election which saw Dr. Hilla Limann, the Flagbearer of the People National Party (PNP) as the winner of the 1979 elections because UNC chose to support PNP instead of PFP in the second round of the election, Dr. Limann made William Ofori Atta the Chairman of the Council Of State Elders, and also appointed some other UNC members to man other positions.
After the defeat, PFP merged with some other political parties to form the All People’s Party (APP), its leader was Victor Owusu. It was however banned after the 1981 coup by the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) which overthrew the PNP Limann Led government.
The leader of PNDC was Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings.
After the 1981 coup, some members of PFP/APP like JA Kufuor, Dr. Obed Asamoah, Alhaji Iddrisu Mahama and many others joined PNDC in their rule.
- PFP finally developed into the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
NPP was formed in July, 1992. With Professor Albert Adu Boahen as its first Flagbearer, It lost its first election in 1992 to Jerry John Rawlings as the leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to form the first government under the Fourth Republic. The NPP later won the 2000 and 2008 General Elections under Former President J.A Kufuor as its flagbearer. It is currently managing the country under its current Flagbearer, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
By: Kofi Akyin Wilson