Treat my citizens well – Akufo-Addo tells Saudi Mission head

General News of Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Source: Myjoyonline.com

2017-01-25

Nana Addo Ghana 620x330President Nana Akufo-Addo is asking the Ambassador to Saudi Arabia to ensure friendly relationship

The President Nana Akufo-Addo is asking the Ambassador to Saudi Arabia to ensure that the friendly relationship between the two countries reflects in how Ghanaian citizens are treated in Saudi Arabia.

The Ghanaian leader is not happy with the way citizens of his country are treated in the Gulf state.

President Akufo-Addo expressed the concern when the head of the Saudi Arabia mission in Ghana Hisham Mishal Al-Suwailem, paid a courtesy call on him at the Flagstaff House in Accra, Wednesday.

Diplomatic relationship between the two countries is high but same cannot be said about treatment meted out to Ghanaians when they go to Saudi Arabia.

In 2015, a 21-year-old lady named only as Amina was gang raped and deported to Ghana by the Saudis when she had only gone for greener pastures.

It added to the tall list of domestic abuse many Ghanaians have suffered in the hands of Saudi authorities.

Saudi Arabia was not the only culprit in the act of maltreating Ghanaian citizens. An inter-ministerial taskforce made up of officials of the Foreign Affairs, Interior, Labour and Employment was constituted in 2016 and tasked to investigate the causes of the dehumanizing treatment meted to Ghanaians when they travel to the Gulf states.

The taskforce had, as one of its core duties, to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Arabian countries to treat Ghanaian workers with dignity.

President Akufo-Addo told Saudi Arabian Ambassador Hisham Mishal Al-Suwailem they must begin to walk the talk on diplomacy between the two countries.

“You make sure that as much as possible, the very friendly relations between our two nations is reflective in the way in which our people are also treated,” he said

The Saudi Arabian Ambassador had paid a courtesy call on him at the Flagstaff House, Wednesday.

Also to bid good bye after a five year stay in Ghana was the Brazilian Ambassador, Irene Vida Gala, Ambassador.

The president wished her well but appealed to her to fast track existing agreement between Ghana and Brazil on the development of a sickle cell centre at the Komfo Anokye teaching hospital and ongoing road projects.

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