Susanna Al-Hassan First Female To Be Appointed Minister In Africa

Source; Radio Tamale 91.7

Susanna Al-Hassan born on 27th November 1927 and died on 17th January 1997, was a Ghanaian author and politician, who in 1961 became Ghana’s first female to be appointed minister.

She was the first African woman to hold a cabinet portfolio and became the member of parliament for the then Northern Region parliamentary constituency between 1960 and 1966.

Susanna Al-Hassan
Susanna is the first northern female hero who helped in the struggle for independence. She was a Ghanaian author and politician. She was the first African woman to hold a cabinet portfolio and became the first female to be appointed a minister. She also served as the Member of Parliament for the northern region.

Sussana Al-Hassan was born in Tamale and educated at Achimota School. From 1955 to 1960 she was headmistress of Bolgatanga Girls’ Middle School. She is the mother of former GTV News anchor Selma Ramatu Alhassan who later became Selma Valcourt and Mr Victor Alhassan of Sky Petroleum.

On the fight against prostitution in northern Ghana in the 1960s, the CPP government engaged in mass education campaigns that emphasized the association of prostitution with “social evil”, “enemy” and “crusade”, among the aged and illiterate population.

Al-Hassan asserted that the problem rather lay with “the soaring rate of depravity and lewdness among our younger generation especially school girls and young working girls” who traveled to Tamale for work or school.


  1. “Socio-cultural implications for women and leadership”. Cultural News. National Commission on Culture. 2007-05-17. Archived from the original on 2011-07-23. Retrieved 2010-06-05.
  2.  Kwame, Stephen (2010). An African Living with Depression in America. iUniverse. p. 168. ISBN 978-1450220163.
  3.  Raph Uwechue, ed. (1991). Africa Who’s Who. Africa Journal Limited. p. 155. ISBN 978-0-903274-17-3. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
Source; inspire Us – West Africa

1. Susanna Alhassan was a Ghanaian children’s books writer and a politician. She was Ghana’s first female to be appointed minister and was part of Kwame Nkrumah’s parliament.

2. Mary Chinery-Hesse is a former Ghanaian judge, a retired international civil servant and the first female director of the International Labor Organization.

3. Alice Annum was Ghana’s first sensational female Olympian sprinter but little known, she won gold at the 1965 All Africa Games (long jump) in Brazzaville, silver at the 1970 Commonwealth Games in Scotland, silver again in both 100 meters and 200-meter races and bronze in the 1974 New Zealand edition; 200-meter section. Also, she pulled it off at three consecutive Olympic Games: 1964 (Tokyo), 1968 (Mexico City) and 1972 (Munich).

4. Mabel Dove Danquah was a journalist, political activist and creative writer, one of the earliest women in West Africa to work in these fields. She was one of the first feminists from Ghana.

5. Sophia Oboshie Doku was one of the first female parliamentarians in Ghana. She was a representative in the first parliament under Ghana’s first President.

6. Hannah Cudjoe was a strong crusader in the pursuit of Ghana’s independence. She led the petitioning of the colonial masters for the release of the big six.

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