Accra, March 03, GNA - Miss Shirley Botchway, the Deputy Minister of Information, on Friday urged all Ghanaians to reflect on the past and look to the future with hope as the country marks its 49th independence anniversary.
"Forty-nine years ago we stepped into the unknown; today we step into the future with the past as a guide. We do not have an excuse not to succeed. The state of our nation is strong and has a lot of prospects." "Let us from midnight of 07 March start our jubilee march and in doing so, join in a collective effort as shareholders of Ghana incorporated, to build a country we can all be proud of," the Deputy Minister said in a statement to parliament to commemorate the country's independence on March 06.
She listed some of the successes chalked by the country and said "our record of good governance has given us the opportunity to access the US millennium challenge account as well as gain a total debt write off from the International Monetary Fund and World Bank." "To crown it all, Ghana enjoys peace. We live in a stable political and economic environment in a region where civil strife abounds," Ms Botchway added.
The Deputy Minister also touched on some of the problems encountered since the country became independent and said although independence was supposed to have set the country on a path of economic and social freedom, after so many years, the country has witnessed a chequered political history and military upheavals. She said government had put in place many programmes to help accelerate development through the provision of sound economic policies. "Mr Speaker, any objective and dispassionate observer will agree with me that the NPP administration has managed the external shocks and deserve applause."
She said Ghana has also played a leading role in ensuring peace in the sub-region, which has given true meaning to the country's first President's position in linking Ghana's independence to the total liberation of the African continent.
Mr Alfred Agbesi, NDC-Ashaiman, in his contributions, said although the country had attained political independence there was still no economic independence, adding that there was still wide spread corruption in the system.
Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom, Minister of Public Sector Reforms, said everybody had a responsibility to look ahead and put aside hatred and ethnic consideration to ensure the contributions of all to national development.
He said the first President of Ghana had a lot of vision for the country and made reference to various documents including the 1951 CPP manifesto, which sets forth various economic programmes such as the need to modernise agriculture.