General News of Friday, 6 March 2015
President John Mahama has given Ghanaians thumbs up for standing up against tribal bigotry as he addresses a national parade to mark 58 years of independence.
Opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) stalwart and former finance minister Yaw Osafo-Maafo was heard in a leaked audio tape pitching southerners against northerners, saying the former have allowed the latter who have no resources to rule over them.
Although the engineer claimed the tape was doctored, hundreds of Ghanaians – members of the NPP and the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) – took to the street this week to demonstrate against such comment in a protest dubbed “One Ghana demo.”
Speaking at the Black Star Square to mark Ghana’s 58th year anniversary, Friday, president Mahama said: “I was pleased with the show of unity by Ghanaians who took to the streets against ethnocentrism… We cannot sacrifice our ethnic diversity on the political altar.”
He added: “I pledge to promote an atmosphere of political rapprochement and I hope all political leaders will do same.”
A national parade of schoolchildren and contingents of security personnel climaxed the celebration at the Black Star Square in Accra. Similar parades were held in all the regional and district capitals. This year’s celebration has the theme, “Achieving Transformation through National Unity”.