President John Evans Atta Mills yesterday expressed condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in a massive earthquake that hit north-eastern Japan, triggering a tsunami that has caused extensive damage.

The President, who said this when the outgoing Japanese Ambassador, Mr. Keiichi Katamani, called on him at the Castle in Accra, expressed the hope that the casualty rate would not increase.

“I pray that the people of Japan will be strengthened in this period of pain and despair,” he stressed.

Japanese television showed cars, ships and even buildings being swept away by a vast wall of water after the 8.9-magnitude earthquake.
The quake has sparked fires in several areas including Tokyo. At least 32 people were killed, officials said.

It struck about 250 miles (400 kilometres) from the capital at a depth of 20 miles. There have been powerful aftershocks.

The President thanked Ambassador Katamani for playing his role diligently in the country and also for facilitating his visit to Japan last year during which a loan facility for Ghana was resumed.

He said it was through the effort of the outgoing ambassador that Japanese companies continued to show interest in investing in the Ghanaian economy, adding that “you have a lot to do to promote our two countries”.

President Mills said the country placed high premium on its relations with Japan and pledged to accord similar support to the ambassador’s successor.

Ambassador Katamani, who served two and a half years in Ghana, observed that trade investment between the two countries had increased during his tenure of office.

Source: Daily Graphic