Koforidua, June 13, GNA - The Minister of Regional Co-operation and New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD), Dr Konadu Apraku, has cautioned that Africa would be doomed for a long time if NEPAD failed. He explained that this would be so because "NEPAD is a document of critical self-assessment of African leaders on why the continent had not got it right and continue to fail, while all other continents continue to succeed and provide the appropriate solutions to the problems which have even been accepted by the African Development Partners."
Dr Apraku made the observation during a sensitisation lecture of members of the Eastern Regional House Chiefs on Friday at Koforidua. He said the NEPAD document was something that would affect the socio-economic development of African countries, including Ghana, and so it is important that people should know the contents of the document. The Minister said his Ministry had visited seven regions to introduce the document to the people and the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs is the first among the rest to welcome him and assured that his office was ready to respond to any Regional House of Chiefs that would invite his office to discus the document.
He said one of the major observations that came out of the NEPAD document was that Africa had been failing, despite all the necessary support by the donor community, because "African leaders had not been sincere with their people."
Dr Apraku said one important aspect of the implementation of the NEPAD document was the African Peer Review which is aimed at finding out if what the African leaders proclaim about their countries really existed.
He said the review would not be only for the Government, but other arms of governance like Parliament, the judiciary, traditional institutions, the press, civil society and a lot more including the role of opposition parties.
Dr Apraku explained that the main aim of the review was to enable the country to know its strength and weaknesses to enable it receive support from the donor community on how to improve upon its weaker areas.
He said one of the areas stressed for the implementation of the NEPAD document was regional integration and under that, West Africa is to introduce a second monetary zone by July 1, 2005, which would use the ECO as its medium of exchange.
The countries involved in the monetary zone include Ghana, Nigeria, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Gambia.
Dr Apraku said Liberia had not been involved because for 25 years, it had been engaged in war and had not made any contributions to ECOWAS, saying now every encouragement is being given to them to do what it takes to join the fold.
Daasebre Akuamoah Boateng, Kwahumanhene, observed that the Dagbon crisis was more political than a chieftaincy issue, when one consider the history behind it and so it would be wrong for the issue to be taken on the surface as a chieftaincy issue and be used to judge the institution.
In his contribution, Daasebere Dr Oti Boateng, Omanhene of New Juaben Traditional Area, observed that in the development of modern systems of governance, the traditional authority had not been considered as an active partner in governance, "hence the problems facing the African society."