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31.01.2006 General News

APRM not to indict government

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Accra, Jan 31, GNA - Government on Tuesday said the intention of the African Peer Review Mechanism was not to indict government, but an attempt to evaluate for commendation or correcting the governance process.

Presenting the State of the Nation Address to Parliament, President John Agyekum Kufuor noted that in Ghana's particular case, "the Report avails us a comprehensive, bird's eye view survey of our constitutional, socio-economic and corporate governance approach to development." President Kufuor indicated that by agreeing to the APRM, Ghana had earned great respect from fellow African states and the larger international community who saw her as a haven of peace within the West Africa sub-region and Africa.

He said Ghana's strong and weak points were at once exposed and thereby enabled government to emphasize or de-emphasize on areas as and when it was necessary to achieve overall efficiency in its development programme.

President Kufuor said the mechanism additionally underscored the new political will to serve the well being of Ghanaians.

"It demonstrates our commitment to democracy and good governance as prerequisites for development. It brings to the fore, the challenges and opportunities that could be unleashed by a true partnership, first and foremost among the nations of Africa ... and the rest of the world to secure a truly functioning and dignified participation in the global market."

On Ghana's participation in regional groupings, President Kufuor said the world was converging in various regional and sub-regional groupings not only for security, but also, to exploit the economies of scale in the face of aggressive competition on the global market. "Africa and Ghana cannot be different."

He mentioned Ghana's role in the West African Gas Pipeline Project, West African Power Pool and the search for a single monetary zone in the sub-region as some of the major challenges facing the nation.

The President commended Ghanaian soldiers who distinguished themselves in peacekeeping zones in the sub-region and beyond. He said he was pleased that Ghana had been listed as the 10th happiest country in the world ahead of the US and the UK, adding that it was important for Ghanaians not to denigrate the country, or government and the institutions that strived to uphold those rights.