President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has rejected assertions that Ghana is a xenophobic state, stating the country has no problems with fellow Africans living and working here.
“There is no xenophobia in Ghana, we are not a xenophobic State. We are the pan-African nation that has opened its doors to all Africans, and they are not going to be the object of any hate campaign in Ghana.”
Nana Akufo-Addo’s comment Friday comes on the back of recent attacks on some Nigerians in Kumasi Suame Magazine whose shops were closed for allegedly engaging in retailing businesses which per Ghana’s laws are reserved for Ghanaian nationals.
The President was addressing a shot ceremony at the Jubilee House in Accra to bid farewell to the outgoing Ambassador of Cote d’Ivoire to Ghana, Bernard Ehui-Koutua, who also doubles as the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps in Ghana.
The President requested the outgoing Ambassador to carry the message to his country that Ghana continues to remain open and welcoming, “especially to our brothers and sisters from all parts of the continent.”
Despite Ghana’s hospitality, he said the state will not in any way compromise the its domestic laws, hence those who come into the country ought to abide by those laws.
“What we do insist on, which is what every nation insists on, is that our own domestic laws are respected by those who come into our country, and, in so saying, we are no different from other people,” the President stated.
He insisted that the impression being created abroad that there is a rise in xenophobia in Ghana does not conform in any way to the truth.
“We continue to remain an open society, welcoming, especially, to our kith and kin on this continent. So, I will like you, in very, very strong terms, to convey these sentiments of mine to your President back home,” the President added.
Sad day for Ghana
Describing Ambassador Ehui-Koutua’s departure as a sad day for Ghana, President Akufo-Addo stated that the outgoing Ambassador to Ghana “conducted himself with great dignity, and ended up as the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps”.
With Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire bonded by ties of common blood, common history, common ethnicity and common geography, the President noted that “one of the most important, diplomatic, strategic, political relations that Ghana can have with any country is with the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire.”
Agreements such as the “Strategic Partnership Agreement” signed by the two leaders of the two countries, Presidents Alasanne Ouattara and Nana Akufo-Addo, coupled with the substantial convergence of views of the two leaders on regional, continental and global matters, were highlighted by President Akufo-Addo as examples of the successes chalked by Ambassador Ehui-Koutua.
“I am looking forward to deepening and strengthening the ties between our two countries. We are at the centre of integration efforts both in the region and on the continent. We will continue to walk side by side as we have been doing these past years,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo also bid farewell to Mohammed Hussain Al-Failakawi, outgoing Ambassador of the State of Kuwait to Ghana; to Mohammed Farahat, outgoing Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco to Ghana; and to Mr. Hugues Chantry, Ambassador of Belgium to Ghana.