President Akufo-Addo on Tuesday, December 24, delivered his Christmas and New Year Message to the people of Ghana and persons from the African diaspora celebrating the holiday in the country.
In the over six minutes message captured in a video and delivered from the Jubilee House, the seat of Government, the President wished Ghanaians all persons around the world a Merry Christmas and a Happy, prosperous new year, calling for kindness to be extended to those in need this season.
Read below his address as transcribed:
On behalf of the government, the First Lady, my wife Rebecca, my daughters, grandchildren and my family, I wish all Ghanaians and people the world over, a Merry Christmas and Happy, Prosperous New Year.
As we celebrate Christmas, with its glad tidings of great joy, let us remind ourselves of the beautiful story of the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
The Prophet Isaiah summed it up when he said, and I quote: “for to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the Government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called wonderful counselor, mighty God, everlasting father, prince of peace.”
So let us rededicate ourselves to Him and remain committed to the cardinal Principles of Christianity which are faith, love, charity and reconciliation.
Let us also take a moment to reflect on our country; on how far God has brought us and on the many blessings especially of freedom, peace and stability He continues to shower upon us.
We have good reason to be thankful to God for the modest successes we chalked over the course of 2019. 1.2 million of our children have today unfettered access to Senior High School education, the highest enrollment in our history.
We have revived healthcare system, we have had bumper harvests of food stuffs for two years in succession with food prices in their lowest in years; tens and tens of thousands of teachers, health workers, graduates and nongraduates alike have been given jobs.
We have retooled and re-equipped our police service and armed forces to a considerable extent.
Our economy is one of the fastest growing economies in the world this year and we are the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in West Africa.
We have had to take painful but necessary measures to sanitize and save the banking system; a process which I know has brought discomfort to many a household.
It is worthy to note, however, that the jobs of some 6,500 workers were saved as a result instead of the 10,000 that could have been lost in addition to the protection of funds of 4.6 million depositors.
Thus far, the Ministry of Finance and Bank of Ghana have worked together to guarantee payment of 100℅ of deposits of customers of the failed banks which is being done.
I have directed the Ministry of Finance to work with Bank of Ghana to ensure that the same applies to customers of Microfinance and Savings and Loans Companies whose licenses have been revoked.
Investigations into potential criminal conduct are proceeding.
As it appears, there has been a massive diversion of assets of these financial institutions. I assure you, that the outcome of these inquiries will be made known very soon, as well as the actions that will be taken to bring those responsible to book.
Work is ongoing in all parts of the country to fix the road network and with 2020 being the year of roads, we should see massive improvement during the year.
Systematic measures are also being undertaken to strengthen the accountability Institutions of our state in the fight against corruption as the surest and most effective way to deal with this canker.
The police under the new IGP, Mr. James Oppong Boanuh, has made a significant deployment of his personnel around the country and is determined to provide security to you and your family during this holiday season.
Next year, it’s another important year in our democratic journey.
We will hold in December 2020, the 8th general election in the history of the 4th republic.
We all have a duty to conduct ourselves in such a manner that we have a free, fair and transparent election that will enable the Ghanaian people choose in peace and serenity the person and persons who will manage their affairs on their behalf.
I am confident that yet again Ghanaians will rise to the occasion and reinforce the status of Ghana as the beacon of democracy on the continent.
The country is by no means out of the woods yet but there is a growing sense of confidence that with hard work and determination, Ghana will make and collectively, we will secure our futures.
So let us celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ safely and responsibly and avoid doing anything that will put our lives and the lives of our loved ones and others in harm’s way. Let us be a blessing on the lives of those in need through our actions bring good cheer to all.
And to our brothers and sisters and others who have come from beyond our shores and are joining us celebrate Christmas this Year of Return, I say akwaaba, our word of welcome to each if you.
Ghana is certainly the place to be this December and I hope you are enjoying the famed, warm Ghanaian hospitality and proud colorful heritage.