Let’s build on common bonds to promote prosperous nation — Akufo-Addo

President Akufo- Addo at Ghana @ 60 celebration

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has appealed to Ghanaians to give true meaning to the sacrifices that led to the nation’s independence by drawing on the strength of diversity, re-focusing national energies on common goals and rising above ethnic or sectional interests to build a progressive and prosperous nation.

Addressing a colourful parade to mark Ghana’s 60th Independence anniversary at the Black Star Square in Accra yesterday, the President said: “After 60 years we have run out of excuses and it is time to set Ghana right and get our country to where it should be.”
The celebration, on the theme: “Mobilising for Ghana’s future”, was graced by former Presidents John Dramani Mahama, John Agyekum Kufuor and Jerry John Rawlings.

Also in attendance were a number of African leaders, including President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Mr Faure Gnassingbe of Togo.

President Nana Akufo-Addo reviewed the parade, lit the perpetual flame and took the national salute before delivering the Diamond Jubilee speech.

‘Professor’ Azumah Nelson, the legendary Ghanaian boxer, received the perpetual flame from President Akufo-Addo and carried it out of the parade ground to be taken around all the regional capitals. The flame will be returned to the Black Star Square on March 6, 2018.

President Akufo-Addo said the nation faced one challenge: to build its economy and generate a prosperous, progressive and dignified life for the people devoid of political and ethnic considerations.

He said hard work, enterprise, creativity and consistent fight against corruption in public life constituted the panacea to overcoming that challenge, adding that it was a strict adherence to those principles that would “bring the transformation we seek”.


While underscoring the need for unity among Ghanaians in their effort to develop, President Akufo-Addo said: “We must take pride in our diversity by all means, but the Ghanaian must always rise above ethnic or sectional interests.

“We have a bright future and we must mobilise all our resources and all our strengths, here and in the Ghanaian Diaspora, to get to that promised land faster.”

When Ghana gained independence in 1957, he said, the popular slogan was to seek first the political kingdom and all other things would be added, adding: “We assumed, and indeed, we expected that rapid economic development would follow the political freedom that we had won. Sadly, the economic dividend that was meant to accompany our freedom has still not materialised. Sixty years after those heady days, too many of our people continue to wallow in unacceptable poverty.”

President Akufo-Addo said the nation faced one challenge: to build its economy and generate a prosperous, progressive and dignified life for the people devoid of political and ethnic considerations.

‘Yes, we can’

The President was confident that Ghana could achieve the dreams of its forebears for the people to bear the accolade of being Ghanaians with pride.

He, therefore, called on Ghanaians to mobilise for the happy and prosperous Ghana of tomorrow in which all, including the youth, women and the vulnerable in society, would have equal opportunities to realise their potential and build lives of dignity.

It was then, he said, that “our independence will be meaningful. Then we will have a Ghana beyond aid”.

President Akufo-Addo paid glowing tribute to a number of Ghanaians who, in diverse ways, had contributed to the independence struggle and the development of corporate Ghana.

He said issues regarding the environment had to be taken seriously, adding that “we cannot ignore the state of the environment”.

“It is turning out to be a constant refrain, but, on a day like this, we cannot ignore the state of our environment. We are endangering the very survival of the beautiful and blessed land that our forebears bequeathed to us,” he said.

Preserving the environment

“The dense forests that were home to varied trees, plants and fauna have largely disappeared. Today, we import timber for our use and the description of our land as tropical forest no longer fits the reality. Our rivers and lakes are disappearing, and those that still exist are all polluted,” the President said.

He said land was being held in trust for succeeding generations and that “we have a right to exploit the bounties of the earth and extract the minerals and even redirect the path of the rivers, but we do not have the right to denude the land of the plants and fauna, nor poison the rivers and the lakes”.


Source: graphic.com.gh