By Ken Sackey, GNA Special Correspondent,
Washington DC, March 5, GNA - President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was at the weekend presented with the Exemplary Leadership Award for his visionary and inspirational leadership on the African continent.
The award, presented to him by Rosa Whitaker, Chief Executive officer of the Whitaker Group at Gala a dinner night to mark the 15th anniversary of the group, celebrated the President's holistic management of Ghana’s economy and his institution of realistic and inclusive policies that had set the country on a growth path and boosted the confidence of investors in the country.
It was jointly awarded by the Africa Society for the National Summit on Africa; The Corporate Council on Africa; Invest Africa USA; The US Chamber of Commerce; the US-Africa Business Centre, Africare; and the Whitaker Group.
A citation presented to him read: “May Ghana, under your Administration, be a wonder and inspiration to the world.
"May the Horizon of every African man and woman be broadened because of your lions ring leadership. May every child believe that he or she can because you lifted them up and paved the way.
"May your commitment in education and inclusion be remembered in the annals of history. May the world never be the same because you dared greatly and succeeded," the citation read.
Tributes given by the other organisation that jointly gave him the award, celebrated President Akufo-Addo's push for investments and trade, which they held, would incentivize and boost foreign investment in Ghana and Africa.
“Everyone recognizes that this is a new era for Africa…a lot has to do with leadership. You are a shining example of the leadership in Africa that is making a difference,” a tribute to him said.
"The leadership that you’ve shown over the last year in Ghana has proven a real destination for American investment…and the US Chamber of Commerce couldn't have found a better partner than the President who has shown that leadership matters in Africa and hopefully what he is doing in Ghana would transcend countless boundaries and all leaders and private sector should look towards Ghana as a potential economic powerhouse", another tribute said.
"In this country there is a pool of capital from the private sector…I have never heard such optimism about Ghana…and it is time we unlock that money, and send it to Africa, specifically Ghana", a business representative said.
"Your leadership has brough renewed hope and expectation for Ghana’s achievement in the future and with your leadership, Ghana would remain one of the brightest stars. The Africa Society congratulates you", a representative of the African Society for the National Summit on Africa said.
"We are delighted that you are governing Ghana in a way we can admire. Your effort to incentivize business in Africa…we as an NGO applaud that because more private sector investment means better and human development. Africa salutes you and we are routing for your success."
President Akufo-Addo, who was humbled by the award and the accompanying tributes, thanked Rosa Whitaker and the Whitaker Group for the honour.
He said “what our history has taught us is that the spirit of the Ghanaian, in his or her quest for peace, progress and prosperity, cannot be quenched. We are a determined lot, who cannot be deterred.”
The President noted that the global recognition of Ghana as a beacon of democracy and stability on the African continent, was a stepping stone to further deepen Ghana's democracy.
“We must create wealth and provide happiness to our nation. We can only do this when we have a powerful private sector, with a strong sense of enterprise, innovation and creativity, and an educated and skilled population that is capable of competing in the global marketplace.
“This is why we are insisting on making basic education, i.e. kindergarten through primary school to junior high school to senior high school, free in all our public schools, to guarantee access to quality basic education to all of Ghana’s children, irrespective of the circumstances of their birth. In doing so, we must expand our horizons and embrace science and technology as critical tools for our development,” he told the gathering.
“We have to build a confident Ghana, which is united, at peace with itself and takes pride in its diversity, and continues to pursue its historic pan-African vocation. It will not be easy. We have no illusions whatsoever about the nature of the task that we face, but I know that Ghanaians will rise to the occasion; they always do.”
“The Black Star is going to shine and shine and shine, and we are going to build a Ghana Beyond Aid,” the President said to thunderous applauds from the gathering.
The event, which attracted cross section of the American and Ghanaian society, from politicians to investors and notable non-governmental organization and people from various walks of life, celebrated the unlimited possibilities on the African Continent, with investors promising to channel more capital into Ghana and Africa.