Oct 192020

1 Roseneath Terrace, Edinburgh EH9 1JS

1 Roseneath Terrace

The sixth floor of 1 Roseneath Terrace was home to Eustace Akwei while he studied medicine at Edinburgh during the 1940s. Coincidentally, another Ghanaian medical student, Emmanuel Evans-Anfom, would later move into the very same room. The landlady was therefore “familiar with the ways of students from the Gold Coast” and remarked that Eustace Akwei was “a courteous and cultured gentleman”. Eustace Akwei trained to become a doctor in Edinburgh at a time when it was official policy to exclude indigenous African from practicing medicine in West Africa. From the beginning of the twentieth century to the end of 1945, the medical services in British West Africa were amalgamated and in 1902 the West African Medical Staff (WAMS) was formed. The WAMS formally rejected any physician not of “European parentage” from its ranks and was the only department in the British empire to do so. In 1955, more than half a century after this racist policy was first enacted and a decade after it was repealed, Eustace Akwei became the first Ghanaian to be appointed Chief Medical Officer in the Gold Coast. In 1958, he was one of the prominent doctors present at the inauguration of the Ghana Medical Association.

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