Executive Chairman of Databank Group, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, has stated that the late William Ofori-Atta is the best president Ghana never had.

According to him, Mr Ofori-Atta was always passionate about placing his nation first in his life and would wish that all Ghanaians followed suit.

Ken was speaking at a lecture to mark the centenary celebration of William Ofori-Atta at the British Council Hall in Accra on Tuesday. It was on the theme: “The Quest for a prosperous Ghana”.

He said Paa Willie, as Mr Ofori-Atta was affectionately called, would be saddened if he were to resurrect to see his Ghana in its current state.

Ken regretted that despite the enormous efforts by the ‘Big Six’ of Ghanaian politics – which included Paa Willie – to make Ghana a free and democratic country, the nation is still hugely dependent on donor funds and advice by international bodies like the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

He claimed that the biggest drawbacks for Ghana’s economy has been its over reliance on exporting raw materials to be refined abroad and sold back to the people, as well as high unemployment and illiteracy rates.

Mr Ken Ofori-Atta stressed the need for Ghana to break free from its economic and social bondage, encouraging a general change in the attitudes of all Ghanaians; especially towards work and development.

“The time for slogans and demagogy is over”, he insisted, “This is time for action.”

Again, he said, “A nation when it collapses collapses on the heads of all of us”.

William Eugene Amoako Ofori-Atta was born in 1901 and attended the Kyebi Government School from 1925 to 1928, Mfantsipim School in 1925 to 1928 and later moved to the Achimota College in 1932. He studied for a BA[Econs] at King’s College, Cambridge, and in 1939 he studied Local Government at the London School of Economics.

When he returned to Ghana in 1939, Paa Willie taught Civics, Economics, History and Twi at the Achimota College.

After leaving Achimota, he served as a treasurer and secretary at Abuakwa State until he joined his uncle J.B.Danquah and others to form the United Gold Coast Convention in 1947.

He remained an active politician for most of his life and for which he suffered several incarcerations.

A tribute by the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) during his funeral in 1988 read: “One thing that stands to Paa Willie’s credit is that he brought to politics a new breath of sincerity; modesty and honesty.”

Story by Dorcas Efe Mensah/Myjoyonline.com/Ghana