Accra, March 2 GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor wants Ghanaians to use the 49th Independence anniversary to renew their faith in the nation and in themselves, his Spokesman told a Castle Press briefing on Thursday.
Mr Kwabena Agyepong said President Kufuor had observed that Ghana had made significant progress politically, economically and socially, which should give cause for celebration and for the people to have self-belief and confidence.
He said it was important for all to appreciate that it was not for nothing that the country was selected among 14 others for total debt cancellation and its inclusion in the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA).
These were the direct result of the achievements made in the areas of good governance, rule of law, improvement of the media landscape and sound economic policies.
Mr Agyepong said already a number of countries and international organisations across the world, including the United Nations, had sent goodwill messages to President Kufuor in connection with the nation's independence celebration.
Busumuru Kofi Annan, Secretary General of the UN, signed the message from the UN.
Mr Agyepong, who touched on other issues including pension benefits, said the collective welfare of the people was the driving force behind the economic policies of the Government. He said this informed President Kufuor's decision to set up a Presidential Commission on Pensions, which officially would be presenting its Report to him at the Castle, Osu, on Friday. The Government, he said, was determined to ensure that workers enjoyed some comfort while in active working service as well as in retirement.
Mr Agyepong dismissed as untrue media speculation that the Governments of Ghana and the United States had concluded an agreement on the establishment of a US military base in Ghana, saying there had been no such consideration at the Executive level. "Ghana has a pro-active foreign policy, a growing bilateral and long standing historical relationship with the US, Britain and France and to suggest that this could make the country become a terrorist target is disingenuous."
He said there was absolutely nothing that could justify such media speculations and, therefore, asked that it should be stopped in the interest of the nation.