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05.09.2003 South Africa

South African Defence Minister calls on Ga Chiefs

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Accra, Sept.5, GNA - Dr Kwame Addo-Kufuor, Minister of Defence on Friday said it was government's policy to co-operate more with African countries for efficient and effective development.

He said it was in line with such a policy that government was co-operating more with neighbouring countries within the West African Sub-Region.

Dr Addo-Kufuor said this when he accompanied the visiting South African Minister of Defence, Mr Mosiuoa Gerard Patrick Lekota to pay a courtesy call on the Ga Traditional Council at the Ga Mantse's Palace in Accra.

Dr Addo-Kufuor said the modest success achieved in the conflicts in Cote d'Ivoire and Liberia were a source of pride to the ECOWAS Chairman, President John Agyekum Kufuor.

He said government's interest was not only in African countries ravaged by conflicts but also in prosperous and successful countries such as South Africa.

"This is manifested in the excellent relationship between Ghana and South Africa", he said.

Mr Lekota stressed the need for both elected government and traditional authorities to work together and live in harmony. He said it was ideal that Africans recognized and respected institutions that bound them together and bequeathed to them by their forefathers.

Mr Lekota expressed appreciation for the people, who had continued to uphold the institutions that had been tried and tested to promote democracy.

Nii Adote Obour II, Sempe Mantse and Acting President of the Council, said conflicts in Africa were affecting its development and stressed the need for co-ordination of efforts among African governments for an effective socio-economic development.

Mr Lekota who arrived in Accra on Thursday at the head of an eight-member delegation for a three-day official visit was the special guest at the graduation parade held at the Ghana Military Academy and Training School at Teshie on Friday.

He is expected to call on the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi.

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