President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Wednesday said despite Ghana’s challenges, the country is on the path to its goal of a Ghana Beyond Aid.
“As we celebrate our nation’s 62 birthday, we should be fortified in the knowledge that despite our challenges and difficulties, we are on course to reaching our goal of a Ghana Beyond Aid,” he said when he delivered the 62nd Independence Anniversary address at the Alui Mahama Sports Stadium in Tamale.
Emphatic that it was feasible to realise ” the vision of the free, fair, democratic, self-reliant, prosperous Ghana, governed by the rule of law and respects for human rights , that inspired our forebears to fight for the liberation of our country and continent from foreign domination,” the President called on Ghanaians to stand united and purposeful because Ghana stood at the threshold of realising that vision.
“Let us remain steadfast and united – the goal is within reach,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo delivered the address after an impressive march past by school children and security personnel and displays of acrobatic drills, precision manoeuvres and military hardware and equipment by the armed forces, and cultural performances.
Marked on the theme “Celebrating Peace and Unity”, the Independence Day Celebration was being held outside the national capital Accra for the first time.
Tamale, the northern regional capital was chosen to host the 62nd Independence Day Celebration not only to underline the unity of the nation, but the peace and reconciliation that had overshadowed Dagbon at the enskinment of a new Yaa Naa after decades of strife and uncertainties in the kingdom.
This year’s celebration witnessed a special military tactical air assault display by a detachment from the airborne unit, who rappelled onto the centre field of the stadium from a hovering Ghana Airforce helicopter.
Some 602 men and women drawn from the various security services, as well as 560 children and teachers took part in the colourful parade witnessed by people from all sections of the Ghanaian society.
President Akufo Addo called on political leaders in the country to eschew all forms of violence in Ghana democratic process to ensure peace and unity that were crucial elements for national development and prosperity of the people.
He said it was shameful that at this point in Ghana’s development process, violence instigated by politics should derail the gains the country had made over decades, saying, “there should be no room for violence in Ghana’s politics”.
The President vowed to leave no stone unturned to ensure that Ghana’s political sphere was violence free. “I will spare no effort to ensure the nation is rid of politically-related violence,” he stated, calling on all and sundry to shun acts that have the potential to undermine the peace of the country,” he stated.
Also in attendance were; the first Lady Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, President of Niger, Mahamadou Issoufou, Vice President Dr Mahamadu Bawumia and his wife Samira, the Speaker of Parliament Prof. Mike Ocquaye Snr and his wife, former Presidents Jerry John Rawlings and John Dramani Mahama and the Chief of Staff Madam Frema Akosua Osei Opare.
Others included; members of the Council of State, Eminent traditional rulers and clergy, diplomats, senior government officials, members of Parliament, Ministers, service Commanders, and other very important persons.