President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said he is convinced that Ghana will very soon have a female President.
He said aside from the appointment of more women into many and critical positions in his administration and offices of state, Ghana was working to ensure that very soon half of all appointments in the country would be given to women.
President Akufo-Addo was answering questions from some Guyanese, Africans and people of African ancestry at a durbar held for Ghana’s delegation at Georgetown, the capital of Guyana.
He said his Cabinet had 26 per cent women, with 19 per cent of Members of Parliament being women.
Beyond that, he said, there were very critical offices of state which were being occupied by women in his tenure, including the Office of Chief Justice, although the office holder is the second woman to be appointed to that position.
President Akufo-Addo said other appointments he had made in his administration for women into very critical and sensitive positions included the Chief of Staff, whose appointment was unprecedented; the ministers of Communications, Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Justice and Attorney General, Local Government, Fisheries and Aquaculture and Sanitation and Water Resources.
The President of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, Mr David Granger, bestowed the highest honour of the country on his visiting Ghanaian counterpart, Nana Akufo-Addo, at an impressive but simple ceremony at Baridi Benab, the State House, in Georgetown.
A citation accompanying the honour said Ghana’s President was recognised for his dedication and commitment to the Commonwealth, the African Union and ECOWAS and for his unflinching support for the rights of developing states.
At the luncheon after the ceremony, members of the Ghana delegation expressed surprise at the fact that they were treated to familiar dishes such as grilled tilapia, fufu, sweet corn on the cub, jollof rice and kenkey.
The cuisines had local Ghanaian names.
The state luncheon was attended by Ghana’s Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Minister, Mrs Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey; the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs Barbara Oteng-Gyasi; the Secretary to the President, Nana Asante Bediatuo; the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Mr Eugene Arhin, and the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr Akwasi Agyeman.
President Akufo-Addo is visiting Guyana, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and Jamaica.
President Akufo-Addo told the packed hall where the durbar was held that his tour was part of activities earmarked to invite peoples of Africa and African descent and others sympathetic to the cause of Africa to reconnect with their ancestry under the series of events dubbed: ‘The Year of Return’.
He said the move was also to ensure that the slave trade never occurred again.
He also used the opportunity of the tour for investments, education and linkages.
The President said Ghana and Guyana were working to ensure that there were direct flights to and from the countries to make travel hassle-free and also afford everybody the opportunity to come home because “this will reduce the flying time to six hours, instead of the 16-hour winding transits that one had to go through before reaching the Caribbean”.
He said an air services agreement to that effect had been signed between Ghana and Guyana.
President Akufo-Addo added that Black people everywhere in the world would be judged by what pertained in Africa and gave an assurance that Ghana would continue to work assiduously to strengthen the linkages among all Blacks in the world.
Some of the participants in the meeting bemoaned the fact they had been celebrating March as a national holiday with African activities but that holiday and the activities had been halted.
They expressed the hope that with the visit of President Akufo-Addo, they would start the celebration and be given the national holiday.