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20.03.2007 Press Release

Ghana's 50th Anniversary Celebrated in Switzerland and Austria

By Daniel Okaiteye-Blessyn
Ghana's 50th Anniversary Celebrated in Switzerland and Austria

Ghana's Golden Jubilee anniversary was celebrated in Switzerland and Austria with a variety of activities, including receptions, Dinner Dance and Church Service.

At the receptions held in Berne and Geneva, Switzerland, organised by the Ghanaian Missions in Berne and Geneva, and at the Dinner Dance organised by the Union of Ghanaian Nationals in Austria on 6th, 9th, and 10th respectively, His Excellency Ambassador Kwabena Baah-Duodu, Ghana's Ambassador to the Swiss Confederation delivered His Excellency President John Agyekum Kufuor's message. The speech traced Ghana's political history from colonial times to the present. The message also praised the country's founding fathers for their extraordinary courage and sacrifice towards Ghana's emancipation in particular and the continent as a whole. Special tributes were also paid to the country's public servants as well as her development partners for their contribution to the country's development.
While acknowledging the myriad of challenges that Africa was currently facing, the message pointed out that many African countries were making progress and deserved to be encouraged. It urged African youths to resolve to stay back in their countries and use their energies to serve the continent, saying that “the continent now provides a quicker avenue for success financially and emotionally than anywhere else”.

During the highly impressive and colourful ceremonies, pictures and films dating from 1957 to date were shown, while Ambassador Baah-Duodu was joined by other African Heads of Mission to cut the anniversary cakes, which bore the official Golden Jubilee logo.

The Ex-Ghana/Swiss Society, an association of Swiss nationals who have had some working experience in Ghana, seized the opportunity to present a Swiss pendulum clock as a donation to the Office of the President in Accra. His Excellency the Ambassador received the clock and promised to forward it to the competent authorities in Ghana accordingly. The Association had earlier presented a smaller model of the clock to the Embassy at the Chancery in Berne.

At the Vienna function, cultural performances showcasing dances from all the regions in Ghana were performed. Ambassador Baah-Duodu took the opportunity to appraise Ghanaians resident in Austria with efforts being made by the Mission to address their consular problems.

The inter-denominational Thanksgiving Service was held at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva on Sunday, 11th March, 2007 and was attended by the various Ghanaian churches represented in Switzerland. The Reverend Dr. Setri Nyomi, the Secretary General of the World Alliance of Reform Churches, delivered the 50th Anniversary sermon, during which he urged Ghanaians to be thankful for what God had done for the nation for the past 50 years and encouraged them to do more to enhance the development and unity of the country. In a brief message, Ambassador Kwabena Baah-Duodu paid special tributes to Ghanaians abroad for complementing Government's development efforts back home. Among individuals he specifically mentioned were the former UN Secretary General, Busummuru Kofi Annan and Dr. Anarfi Asamoah-Baah, who was recently appointed as the Deputy Director-General of the Geneva based World Health Organisation and who was also present at the service.