President John Agyekum Kufuor on Tuesday concluded an interview with the BBC saying Africa and the rest of the world must remember him at least for an excellent human rights record.

The President who spoke to BBC’s HardTalk television programme prior to his three-day state visit to the US at the invitation of President George Bush, said his tenure of office has seen some of the best human rights records in the world.

“There is no bullying government, people who ruled with iron fist, people who were contemptuous of human rights abuses, no this is not Kufuor’s government.

“Kufuor has been in power almost eight years now, he hasn’t stepped out of proper constitutional operation in respect of human rights of due process of the law,” President Kufuor stated.

He described the NPP government under his leadership as one that factored the needs of the citizenry into all major policy alternatives, a direction he claims has earned him the “Gentle Giant” accolade .

Mr Kufuor also stated that his achievements as President should not be limited to the confines his country.

He cited Ghana government’s mediation efforts in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Zimbabwe as achievements worth being remembered for.

Economy

Central to the President’s interview with the BBC were government’s policies on the health, education and energy.

In touting his achievements in these sectors, President Kufuor mentioned government’s health insurance programme, free education at the basic school level among others.

He rebuffed suggestions that government’s health policies could have come much earlier.

He said the process had to be gradual as the economy had been “in shambles” when the NPP government assumed office some eight years ago.

“I needed to get the economy in shape properly to enable me begin to move on the vision and policies to realise them,” he stated.

Commenting on government’s investment drive the President said the much touted ‘open-door’ policy being advocated during an NPP tenure of office meant both investors and the citizenry benefited.

“What I really wanted was investments that would empower Ghanaians as well as their partners,” President Kufuor stated.

Although he leaves office this year, President Kufuor promised better times ahead for Ghanaians citing cocoa farmers who would soon enjoy a 40% producer price increase.

President Kufuor’s visit to the US is intended to deepen Ghana-US relations and partnership.

It will also strengthen the commitment of the two countries to promote peace and prosperity in Africa and the rest of the world, officials say.

Listen to President Kufuor on BBC’s Hard Talk

Author: Fiifi Koomson

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