The flag of Ghana was first introduced in 1957, when Ghana declared its independence from the United Kingdom. The flag is a rectangular shape consisting of three horizontal stripes, one each of red, yellow, and green, and contains a black five-pointed star in the center of the yellow stripe. It was flown until 1959, when Ghana united with Guinea to form the Union of African States. During this time, Ghana flew a Union flag, which looked like the previous flag, except for the addition of an additional star. When Mali joined the union, a third star was added to the flag. In 1966, the Union disintegrated, and Ghana reinstated its original 1957 flag.
The flag of Ghana is special because the nation was only the second African nation, after Ethiopia, to adopt the red, yellow, and green pan-African colors, and was designed by a woman, Theodosia Salome Okoh. The pan-African colors, although widely used, have symbolic meaning for Ghana. The red symbolizes the blood of those who died for Ghana’s struggle for independence. The gold signifies the wealth of the Ghana’s natural mineral resources and the green symbolizes the rich forests. The black star in the center of the gold stripe commemorates Ghana’s establishment as the first twentieth-century independent African nation.
A few other versions of Ghana’s flag exist, but all of them contain the national flag within it. The Presidential flag is simply the Ghana national flag with gold fringe. The Ghana naval flag consists of a white rectangle with a red cross and the Ghana national flag in the upper left corner. The air force flag of Ghana is a blue rectangle with the Ghana national flag in the upper left corner, but also contains a red, yellow, and green roundel in the lower right corner. The civil aviation is identical to the air force flag, but a black five-pointed star replaces the roundel in the lower right corner.