134. Telegram From the Embassy in Ghana to the Department of State1

233. Re Deptel 188.2 Busia says series developments notably passage emergency powers bill December 3 has discouraged members his party whose morale now low. Continuing repressive measures by GOG and threats by Edusei3 causing sources party funds dry up as former donors especially chiefs grow increasingly cautious of involvement in opposition politics.

Busia wants GOG [U.S.?] immediately or in January to rally American public opinion and persuade minority group to pass resolutions condemning trend in Ghana towards dictatorial government and increasing signs of willingness to accept USSR collaboration in economic and cultural fields. He believes US minority group opinion is only thing that can give GOG pause in this direction.

He also wants raise 25 (not ten) thousand dollars in US purchase vehicles and hire party workers to offset “dangerous indoctrination” being given people by CPP agents who have unlimited funds. He specifically wants warn people against danger of USSR whose Professor Potekhin (Embtel 1584) is he says not sparing word in CPP circles that USSR is only country genuinely desirous and able help Ghana.

Busia is intelligent and knowing. He would want our help to “condition” potential donors in US and also to transfer such funds [Page 388] to Ghana where he says they would appear to be proceeds of party fund raising efforts in Ghana.

I told Busia I could of course have nothing do with all this. He understood. He asked me see if Department could inspire some university invite him expense paid to US and I said I would explore possibility.5

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 845J.2614/12–457. Secret; Priority.
  2. Telegram 188 replied to telegram 227 from Accra, December 3, which expressed the Ambassador’s desire to return to Washington to discuss the matters raised by Dr. Busia. Flake also wanted to discuss the Volta River Project in light of Nkrumah’s approach (see supra). The Department authorized his return, but wished it to be portrayed as a routine matter. (Department of State, Central Files, 123–Flake, Wilson C.) Dr. Busia was one of the first two Africans appointed to the Gold Coast administrative service as assistant district commissioners in 1944. The other was A.L. Adu, a former leader of the Ghana Congress Party, supporter of the National Liberation Movement (NLM), and an organizer and leader of the United Party.
  3. Telegram 132 from Accra, October 14, reported that, at a September 20 rally marking Nkrumah’s birthday, Interior Minister Krobo Edusei had threatened to arrest all opposition members if an attempt was made on the life of the Prime Minister or any CPP leader. (Ibid., 745J.00/10–1457) Telegram 155 from Accra, November 5, noted that, at an October 25 rally, Edusei accused opposition leaders of conspiring to instigate a riot during the opening of the National Assembly on November 13. Edusei stated his intent to introduce an Emergency Powers Bill to deal with traitors. (Ibid., 745J.00/11–557)
  4. Telegram 158 from Accra, October 15, reported that Professor I. Irutt Potekhin and two colleagues had arrived in Ghana to undertake a study of cultural, economic, and social life on behalf of the Moscow Institute of Ethnography. (Ibid., 845J.432/10–1557)
  5. Telegram 208 to Accra, December 19, instructed Flake to tell Busia the Department of State could not be of assistance. If he wished to come to the United States under university sponsorship then he would have to contact educational leaders personally. (Ibid., 845J.2614/12–457)