A new documentary series, Ghana’s Greats has been introduced to tell the stories of phenomenal leaders and the immense achievements of personalities in the country.
The JoyNews initiative is to eulogise outstanding leaders who have contributed immensely to the development of Ghana.
It’s geared towards chronicling the details that culminated in giving these personalities that extraordinary edge, by initiating real conversations about greatness.
The first of series produced by Kwaku Owusu Peprah, highlights the life of former President of Ghana, John Agyekum Kufuor, the untold story of his private life and exploits in his political career.
The statesman who was born on December 8, 1938, in Kumasi is the seventh of ten children to Nana Kwadwo Agyekum, head of the Oyoko royal family, and Nana Ama Dapaah, a Queen mother. His family has royal Asante lineage.
The documentary also throws light on Mr Kufuor’s days back at Lincoln’s Inn in London where he studied law. He passed his bar exam in 1961 and went on to Exeter College at Oxford University to pursue legal studies.
While he was studying at Oxford, Kufuor had an encounter that set a new path for his life. He became friends with his to-be wife at the time Theresa Kufuor.
Ghana’ Greats also chronicles the defeat of longtime President Jerry John Rawlings, who had been in office for 20 years. It was considered by many to be a turning point in Ghana’s future.
President Kufuor’s government introduced a lot of social intervention programs like the Metro Mass Transport, and the National Health Insurance Scheme among others. These initiatives brought remarkable transformation in the socio economic development of the country.
As president, John Agyekum Kufuor was phenomenal in every way. His impact straddled every aspect of national development.
In political and civil rights, the criminal libel law was abolished, he submitted to the African peer review mechanism and supported peacekeeping and reconciliation across Africa.
Kufuor’s tenure saw the introduction of the E-governance program, improved the procurement act and introduced transparency bills such as the whistleblower bill
In addition to the domestic violence law, he also introduced the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty Program (LEAP); to provide direct cash transfers to poor households.
It was during his time as President of the republic that Ghana discovered oil in commercial quantity
President Kufuor launched the US$50 million Microfinance and Small Loans (MASLOC) fund.
There are also a few lows during his time as President. One of them happened on November 14, 2007.
On that afternoon, the nation was stunned with the scary news of a man who crashed into President’s vehicle at the Opeibea House traffic light intersection in Accra.
And there were many of those storms during the eight years of president Kufour’s government. His friend, Richard Anane had to be investigated by CHRAJ over some allegations.
That notwithstanding, Mr Kufuor is a man who had a dream that would outlive his eight-year tenure as president. An ambitious goal of turning Ghana into a middle-income country by the year 2015.
With this goal in mind and the realization of how difficult it would be, Kufuor looked internationally for aid. In 2006 he appealed to South Korea for support in attracting private investments. He also met with U.S. President George W. Bush to discuss receiving aid from the Millennium Challenge Account.
Away from his public life, another interesting venture President Kufuor has invested in is the 2000-acre cocoa farm in his hometown at Daaba in the Atwima Nwabiagya constituency of the Ashanti Region.
Manager of the J.A. Kufuor farms, Mr Appau Gyamfi says it is not surprising that the former president whose political career had taken him across the globe has so much interest in farming.
Arguably John Agyekum Kufuor one is the most outstanding president Ghana has known. His legacy of greatness will live on and his name etched in the sands of our great nation forever.
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