Dec 17, 1956: The opposition NLM and NPP boycott constitutional talks at Achimota

Following years of violence since the inception of the National Liberation Movement (NLM), every effort to find a mediated solution to the constitutional impasse was resisted by the secessionists. Three times the N.L.M. refused to attend a meeting with the Governor and Nkrumah to discuss their grievances. The government set up a parliamentary select committee to discuss the N.LM.’s grievances – the opposition (NLM/NPP) in the Assembly, led by Mr. S.D. Dombo walked out and N.L.M. boycotted the hearings of the select committee. The Governor went to Kumasi but he was stoned and humiliated.

Dr. K.A. Busia travelled to London to see the Minister of State Alex Lennox-Boyd and requested that a constitutional expert be sent to mediate and yet, the N.L.M. refused to co-operate with Sir Frederick Bourne when he arrived in Ghana. Although his recommendations were not favorable to the C.P.P. by any means Sir Frederick described the N.L.M.’s demands as “an extreme form of federation” which “would introduce an intolerable handicap to the administration of the country”.

On December 17, 1956, the N.L.M. was invited to the Achimota conference to discuss Sir Frederick Bourne’s recommendations but refused to attend and instead insisted on a constituent assembly to draft a new federal constitution.