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Speech by H.E. Anna Bossman on Ghana's 66th Independence Anniversary on 6th March 2023

Speech by H.E. Anna Bossman on Ghana's 66th Independence Anniversary on 6th March 2023

Mar 6- 2023

Fellow Ghanaians,

 

It is with much pleasure that I address you on the occasion of the 66th Independence Anniversary of our dear country Ghana, and to wish you, on behalf of the President of the Republic, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Government, the Ghana Embassy in France, its staff, and on my own behalf, a very Happy  Independence Anniversary.

 

 Today, we commemorate the heritage won for us through the blood and toil of our forefathers and pay homage to the valiant men and women who led our fight for freedom and independence.

 

As we all know, Ghana played a pivotal role in the decolonisation of Africa by leading the fight for independence south of the Sahara. Our independence from British colonial rule was significant for the continent and set the tone for other African countries to follow suit. Drawing from this precedence, Ghana has always been a trailblazer of the continent in many facets of life hence being often referred to as the lodestar of Africa. 

 

Fellow Ghanaians,

 

          Ghana enjoyed longstanding historical relations with France even before the attainment of our independence.  However, formal diplomatic relations between our two countries were established in 1957 soon after Ghana gained independence and thus, we are marking a double celebration today, by also commemorating the 66th Anniversary of Ghana-France relations.

 

Ghana’s bilateral relations have yielded mutual benefits over the years and brought our two countries even closer together on many spheres. The recent visit of H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to France last October, when he was conferred with a Doctorat Honoris Causa from the prestigious University of Paris-Panthéon Sorbonne, confirmed the high esteem and regard that France has for His Excellency President Nana Akufo Addo and for the Ghanaian people .

 

Furthermore,  the “Fonds de Solidarite pour des Projets Innovants” (FSPI) or in English the Solidarity Fund for Innovative projects, is an initiative pursued by the French government through its Embassy in Accra, to help develop French language learning in Ghana.  This initiative is one of the flagship projects that is making a tangible difference in the lives of Ghanaians.  This year, the French Embassy hopes to launch two new FSPI projects: one focused on the promotion of sports, and the other targeted at the training of teachers in French. I have no doubt that this initiative will serve to further strengthen our political, cultural, economic and social ties. 

 

This year, our Independence Day celebration is under the theme, “Our Unity; Our Strength; Our Purpose”. The celebrations will be held  in the Volta Region.

  Our theme finds expression in the well-known Ghanaian adage, which I believe we are all familiar with and which explains that there is strength in unity.

 

Using the proverbial broom as an example, it is said that one broom stick can easily be broken whereas the whole broom can never be broken as long as it remains in a bunch.  In other words, if we are able to work out our differences and stand up for each other and recognize the immense wealth we have in our diversity we will always emerge victorious.  Our purpose therefore should always be that we must always stand united.

 

This sense of purpose is even more crucial now in a world grappling with global conflicts  and threats and where the poor and voiceless seem to be even more marginalized. We should always act together in the supreme interest of our motherland.

 

Fellow compatriots,

 

I would like to take this opportunity to update you on some important national projects : First is the issuance of the National Identification Card popularly referred to as the Ghana card.  Many of you have enquired as to when the Ghana card will be issued to Ghanaians in France. I would like to indicate that the National Identification Authority (NIA) which is the state agency mandated to issue the cards is working to roll-out a plan to cater for all Ghanaians living abroad.  The NIA is therefore leading the process with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration. The Embassy, which serves as a liaison will communicate with you through your community leaders, when the process is due to commence.

 

Secondly,  in April, 2022 H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic, launched the Destination Ghana Project in London to afford all peoples of African Descent the opportunity to reconnect with the continent and with Ghana in particular. Riding on the successes of the Year of Return and its sequel Beyond the Return, President Akufo-Addo launched the Destination Ghana Project to boost the slow but steady recovery of the country’s tourism sector, after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Considering the many communities of people of African descent dispersed throughout the world, as a result of historic movements specifically the Atlantic trade, H.E. the President has not relented in his pursuit to bring as many African diaspora as possible back to the motherland.

 

Lastly, I know that most of you with investments back home are worried about the economic challenges that our country is currently confronted with.  Ghana, like other emerging economies globally, is battling its worst economic crisis in decades caused by both internal and external shocks.  Ghana’s situation is not a case in isolation since some advanced economies are fighting similar battles.

 

However, all hope is not lost, as Ghana’s economic downturn is gradually softening and inflationary pressures easing.  An agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and a deal on a debt exchange programme, is expected to provide the needed solution for our country’s economy. 

 

To assist in ensuring a swift and lasting economic recovery, I challenge you all as well-meaning Ghanaian citizens to promote Ghana’s favorable political climate and the numerous investment opportunities available in our country.  Ghana is counting on your support as Ghanaians in the Diaspora in realizing her vision of self-reliance in the ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ agenda.

 

In conclusion, I would like to take the opportunity  to congratulate the newly inducted executives of the Ghana Coordinating Council, Paris – GCCP who assumed office last Saturday, 4th March, 2022.  As leaders of our Ghanaian community in Paris, I urge you all to fulfil your obligations to the GCCP and also support the Embassy’s work by liaising with us on a regular basis to push forward Ghana’s agenda in France.

 

Finally, I urge all Ghanaians in France to remain law abiding, peace-loving, and promote Ghana in all your spheres of life.  I assure you all of the Embassy’s commitment to execute its mandate by providing consular services to Ghanaians across France. Continue being good ambassadors of Ghana in France and beyond, while keeping in mind that our unity will provide our strength which will in turn define our purpose.

 

I wish you all a happy anniversary and hope that we can have a bigger celebration in the coming years.

 

Thank you and may God bless our homeland Ghana

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