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Presidential Director of Communication, Koku Anyidoho, has announced that Ghana's President, John Evans Atta Mills, will soon issue an Executive Instrument declaring Monday, September 21st, 2009, an official public holiday.
September 21st, 2009, corresponds to the 100th birthday of the first President of Ghana, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, and current President, John Evans Atta Mills, had announced his intention to create a new, September 21, public holiday, shortly after being elected (2009-02-20).
Director of Communication Anyidoho did go on to say that, although this year's September 21 public holiday would be declared through a one-off Presidential Executive Instrument, after this year's celebrations, the government will present to parliament a bill that would make the celebration of 21st September an annual public holiday.
There had been recurring calls to make September 21 an official public holiday in Ghana (2009-01-30 and 2007-02-01), and President Mills' initial announcement had been confirmed by Ghana's Vice-President in June (2009-06-04).
Yet, until today, some doubts did remain as to the finality of this announcement, as there are frequent, unheeded, calls for the declaration of additional religious public holidays (2009-08-09) as well as the perennial call to restore the June 4th public holiday (2009-04-18, 2009-04-06, and 2001-06-01). The recent imbroglio with the September 3rd public holiday in Zambia (2009-09-02 and 2009-09-01) also served as a reminder to err on the side of caution.
Note that this year's End of Ramadan public holiday in Ghana will be observed on the weekend before this year's new public holiday, either Saturday, August 19, or Sunday, August 20, 2009 (2009-08-09). In the past, Ghana has sometimes declared a day in lieu public holiday for Muslim public holidays that fell on a weekend (2007-10-10), but this year, it seems extremely unlikely that another public holiday would be declared on Tuesday, September 22, 2009.
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