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MAKE A HUGE IMPACT ON AFRICA - Kaunda urges Akufo-Addo

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First President of independent Zambia, Kenneth David Kaunda, has urged President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to continue to shine the torch of Africa, and help deliver the progress and prosperity for the long suffering masses of Africans.

First President of independent Zambia, Kenneth David Kaunda, has urged President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to continue to shine the torch of Africa, and help deliver the progress and prosperity for the long suffering masses of Africans.


According to Dr Kaunda, “your contribution as President can make a huge difference not only for Ghana, but for Africa and the world as a whole. Your becoming President of Ghana has come at a very remarkable time for Ghana and Africa.”

Dr Kaunda said this yesterday when President Nana Akufo-Addo paid a courtesy call on him at his residence in the outskirts of Lusaka, as part of his 3-day official State Visit to Zambia.

Recollecting the role Ghana played through its first leader, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, in helping Zambia gain independence from colonial rule, Dr Kaunda urged all African leaders emulate this example and be each other’s keeper.

“The Bible tells us to love your neighbour as yourself. That neighbour could come from another colour, origin or religion. They may even be from a different political party, but we are all brothers and sisters. We work together to do our part in God’s work. With love, we can overcome great challenges,” he said.

President Nana Akufo-Addo’s visit to Zambia, he added, “nourishes the deep relationship that has been between us for a long time. We have collaborated in various fields of human relations. This visit can enable the governments and peoples of Ghana and Zambia expand and deepen co-operation in various areas of human endeavour.”

For his part, President Akufo-Addo explained his presence in Zambia necessitated him coming to pay his respects to and visit Dr Kaunda, because he represents the symbol of the relationship between Zambia and Ghana.

“It was you and Dr Nkrumah who forged that relationship between our two countries, and also worked to ensure the freedom of our continent. You are the icons of our proud generation – those who fought for our independence and freedom,” he said.

The President continued, “So long as you are alive, and somebody like me comes to Zambia, I have to come and pay my respects, see how you are doing and thank God for your life and for the contribution you have made for the independence and development of our continent.”

President Nana Akufo-Addo underscored the importance of African leaders working together to achieve the common goal of development and improvement in the living standards of the African peoples.

“Our circumstances are the same, and we have to continue to work together, across these colonial boundaries, to ensure that the welfare and progress of our people across the continent are the guiding considerations for those of us who have been blessed with the privilege of political leadership,” he added.

President Nana Akufo-Addo assured Dr Kaunda that “we will continue to walk along the path of solidarity that you fashioned so many years ago. There is a lot that we can gain in the exchanges between our two countries, and I believe that, in the time of President Lungu and myself, we will work closely and assiduously to make sure that our peoples benefit from the relationship.”

The goals set by Dr Kaunda, the President added, have not changed – “the need for all of us to work together and defend our interests and make sure that, within the comity of the world, our voice can be heard loud and clear, defending and promoting the interests of our people.”

Earlier the President of Zambia, Edgar Chagwa Lungu, reiterated his and the commitment of the Zambian people to developing strong bilateral ties and exploring areas of co-operation with Ghana, under the leadership of President Nana Akufo-Addo to the mutual benefit of the two countries.

According to President Lungu, the margin of victory chalked by President Akufo-Addo in the 2016 election “was a true reflection of the confidence the people of Ghana have in your vision, and for that reason, we look forward to working closely with you during your tenure of office.”

The Zambian President noted further that “there are a lot of things you (Ghana) are doing in mining, agriculture, infrastructure development, amongst others, which can benefit Zambia, by being emulated. It is about common, good practices, Mr President, and what you do better, we should not hesitate to emulate.”

President Edgar Lungu made this yesterday when he held bilateral talks with President Nana Akufo-Addo and his delegation.

With the two countries having signed an agreement for the establishment of a Permanent Joint Commission on Co-operation to serve as the legal framework to address their trade and investment concerns, President Lungu bemoaned the non-implementation of this commission.

He, however, indicated that the PJCC would be given a new lease of life under his and the tenure of office of President Nana Akufo-Addo, so as to ensure that “our Ministers will begin co-operating, and, henceforth, make the PJCC a living document.”
On the Ezulwini consensus, a position on international relations and reform of the United Nations agreed by the African Union in 2005, President Lungu was confident that the pioneering role played by President Nana Akufo-Addo, then Foreign Minister of Ghana, in the fashioning of the document would be of invaluable to the cause of the AU.

“You were a pioneer, you were there. So as we go to the UN General Assembly in September, I am sure that Africa can count on you as an anchor,” he added.

President Lungu stressed that, “We want a prosperous Africa, which is integrated, united, peaceful and secured, and influential, not only in Africa but in the UN family.

“Regional integration is one aspect which will lead us to the Africa we want. Zambia is proud to be a member of SADC, and we are equally proud of the role that you (President Akufo-Addo) are playing in ECOWAS, in terms of peace keeping in the region, and trying to find common ground in improving co-operation and development of the African people we are privileged to look after.”

For his part, President Nana Akufo-Addo thanked President Lungu for inviting him to visit Zambia, and thanked him for attending his inauguration on January 7, regardless of the political upheavals that existed in Zambia at the time, as a result of a closely fought election.

With Ghana-Zambia relations spanning nearly six decades, President Nana Akufo-Addo stated that “in our time we must continue to build on it”. The coming into full effect of the PJCC, he said, will be the means to strengthening the areas of co-operation in trade, agriculture, mining, investments, amongst others, between the two countries.

On the Ezulwuni consensus, President Nana Akufo-Addo noted that “it is not right that we (Africa) continue to be marginalised on the Councils of the world. If, today, we make the decision to bring UN reforms back to the centre of the global agenda, I think it is an important thing to do. The G4 countries (Japan, Brazil, Germany and India) are ready to support the African position on UN reforms – the consensus that was fashioned in Ezulwini, some 12 years ago.”

To the Zambian President, President Nana Akufo-Addo assured that his visit is to reciprocate the hand of friendship that you extended to Ghana, “and to be able to say that we are ready to go side-by-side with you in developing this new paradigm for our continent – democratic accountability, more rapid economic growth, focus on stimulating and empowering our various private sectors.”

This, in the view of President Nana Akufo-Addo, “is the way forward for us to generate prosperity for our peoples in our time. That has to be the overriding concern – what we need to do to banish poverty on our continent. It continues to be an anomaly that we, who sit on the wealthiest resources, continue to be the poorest people in the world. That anomaly cannot continue.”

The co-operation and collaboration of African countries with each other, President Nana Akufo-Addo, said is the way to overcoming Africa’s developmental hurdles and, thereby, bettering the lives of the African peoples.