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President, Speaker must deepen peace – Otumfuo urges

 

 

 

The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has urged the President and the Speaker of Parliament to work hard to deepen the peace in the country.

He also urged Ghanaians in general to support the President and the leadership of the country to do away with anything that would jeopardise the peace the country has enjoyed for decades for political expediency.

 

 

Otumfuo Osei Tutu said the current system where the Legislature and the Executive had leaders from opposing political parties should not lead to chaos and ineffectual governance but rather, an opportunity for statesmanship and for the cultivation of the spirit of compromise which had been the crucial missing element in the political discourse.

“This is a plea I address to the nation, every citizen in cities, towns, villages and hamlets. But it begins with the two mighty figures,” he pleaded.

The Asantehene said this when the Millennium Excellence Foundation conferred the Gold Coast Prize for National Cohesion and Stability on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the 2020 Millennium Excellence Awards, at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi last Saturday.

 

 

The event, organised by the Millennium Excellence Foundation (MEF), saw 35 individuals and companies receive awards for excelling in their fields of endeavour.
The awardees included distinguished men and women from Ghana, Nigeria and other parts of Africa.

Decoration

Otumfuo Osei Tutu, who is the Life Patron of the Millennium Excellence Foundation, decorated the President with a colourful robe and a hat at a well organised ball at the Manhyia Palace.

The foundation said the award was in recognition of the President’s “meritorious work in the areas of national cohesion and stability in Ghana.”

 

 

Otumfuo Osei Tutu said a cursory glance around Africa pointed to a continent ravaged by politics at a time of extraordinary challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In spite of the challenges facing the country, the Asantehene said it was refreshing that the country was still enjoying peace.

Fresh start

Otumfuo Osei Tutu said the country was looking up to the President and the Speaker to give the country a fresh start in parliamentary governance in which the legislature was able to hold the executive to account without being obstructive to the execution of its electoral mandate.

 

 

“And we look further to our political leaders to inspire a new approach to politics that removes any unconscious threat to our peace,” he stated.

Regret

The Asantehene expressed regret that the country failed to take account of the Ghanaian traditional governance on the evolution of “ our state”.

“If we did, we could realise that as the chiefs who make up the traditional council or who constitute the chief’s court, they come from very diverse points. Their views are often as diverse and contentious as may be heard in your political forum. And yet the system allows for them to be heard and for a consensus to be arrived at,” he stated.

Prof. Kwesi Yankah (left), a former Minister of Education in charge of Tertiary Education, presenting a citation to  Ms Ajoa Yeboah-Afari, for emerging as the Female Media Personality of the year. Picture:  EMMANUEL BAAH

He said the country was looking up to the President and the Speaker to give the country a fresh start in parliamentary governance “in which the Legislature is able to hold the Executive to account without being obstructive to the execution of its electoral mandate.

“And we look further to our political leaders to inspire a new approach to politics that removes any unconscious threat to our peace,” he stated.

Change

According to the Asantehene Ghana had practised parliamentary democracy for some decades and it was time the country stopped repeating the mistakes of the past.

“There is no wisdom in following the path to disaster,” he added.

He said when the country was in the formative years of its political journey, “we walked in desperation, banged the drums and screamed Aluta!”
After so many decades of independence and democratic governance, the Asantehene said it was time to adopt new approaches to settling grievances.

Response

Responding to the award, President Akufo-Addo acknowledged the support his administration has received from the Legislature.

He cited the approval of his ministers and budget for this year as two key legislative interventions needed for the formation of a government which were approved by the Parliament.

“Both interventions were done in a very good spirit and I thank the Speaker very much for contributing to this occurrence.

“This meant that the difficulty that people feel I would have in being able to get important matters through this Parliament has not, in fact, materialised and it is because of the spirit of co-operation that I receive from the Speaker,” he said.

President Akufo-Addo said it was sad that the Speaker was unable to attend the event to share the stage with him.

According to him, the event of January 7, 2021 which saw the election of Mr Alban Bagbin as the Speaker of Parliament “meant for me that whatever be the case, I have to find a way to work with the Speaker.

“The interest of our nation requires that the two of us find a way to work together no matter the divergent political forces from which we come.”

Lucky man

President Akufo-Addo described himself as a lucky man who was ruling a country where the people “have made it clear that they are determined no matter the difficulties of the circumstances, to build a durable democratic nation in Ghana.”

According to him, the people who were most responsible for that were Ghanaians themselves.

It was in that context that he stated: “I feel extremely obliged, extremely honoured to be their President and wherever I go in the world and I am getting this accolades I know it is because of the quality of the people of this country.”

Laureates

Among the recipients of awards were Ms Ajoa Yeboah-Afari and Mr Manasseh Azure Awuni, as the media personalities for the decades.

Zoomlion Ghana Limited also picked up the award for sanitation and infrastructure in recognition of the company’s commitment to environmental cleanliness.

 

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