Keynote Address of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at 2018 Oxford Africa Conference
His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was sworn into office on 7th January, 2017, as the 5th President of Ghana’s 4th Republic.
He has been a prominent champion of human rights, rule of law, justice, freedom, and democracy in Ghana. Indeed, as a lawyer, he undertook many of the most important constitutional cases of the modern era in Ghana, protected the independence of the judiciary, the right of the citizen to demonstrate without police permit, and the right of equal access of all political parties to the State-owned media.
President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is hoping to build a “Ghana beyond aid” through the use of the country’s own resources for development. “We want to build an economy that is not dependent on charity and handouts, but an economy that will look at the proper management of its resources as the way to engineer social and economic growth in our country,” the President had said.
African countries that gained independence in the 1950s and 60s were faced with many challenges—infrastructural deficit and lack of skilled labour, among others. To accelerate their development, the newly-independent African countries relied so much on assistance from their development partners to fund their development needs. Ghana falls among that group of African countries that have relied on foreign aid to fund its development since 1957, in spite of the country’s wealth in natural resources— cocoa, gold, timber, oil and gas, bauxite and manganese, among others.
A Ghana Beyond aid—can this be mere rhetoric?