General News of Thursday, 5 April 2018
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has refuted widespread reports suggesting that government has given the United States of America the green light to set-up a military base in Ghana.
In his first ever address to the nation from the Jubilee House on the matter on Thursday, 5th April, 2018, the President said under no circumstances will his government agree to such a deal should the United States consider bidding for it.
“Let me state with the clearest affirmation that Ghana has not offered a military base, and will not offer a military base to the United States of America,” he said.
“Indeed, the United States of America has not made any request for such consideration and, consistent with our established foreign policy, we will not consider any such request. However, in consideration of the realities of our circumstances and the challenges to peace in our region in our time, we have deemed it prudent to continue the Co-operation Agreement with the United States of America.”
President Akufo-Addo’s remarks come on the back of the unsuspended debate surrounding the ratified Defence Cooperation Agreement between Ghana and the United States of America which has left a majority of the Ghanaian populace in the dark.
It became eminent for the president to speak on the matter following the series of allegations, threats and derogatory comments from the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Minority in Parliament who have described the deal as a means of selling off Ghana’s sovereignty to the most powerful nation on earth.
Per the agreement, the US military force will, among other things, be exempted from paying tax on the equipment to be brought into Ghana.
The US will also be given the chance to set up its own telecommunication system, but will also be allowed to use Ghana’s radio spectrum free of charge.
However, the president in his address on the matter dashed the pandemonium caused by the NDC and assured Ghanaians of his readiness to protect the country at all cost.
“Fellow Ghanaians, let me conclude by saying how outraged I am by the defamatory comments from my political opponents, some of whose patriotism can be so easily questioned, that the sovereignty of this country has been sold by my government and myself,” President Akufo-Addo said.
“I will never be the President that will compromise or sell the sovereignty of our country. I respect deeply the memory of the great patriots whose sacrifice and toil brought about our independence and freedom.”
“I have stood with you, the Ghanaian people, all my adult life, fighting for our individual and collective rights. Everything I have done, since assuming the great honour and privilege of serving you as President of the Republic, demonstrates that I remain focused on building a self-reliant, free, prosperous Ghana, which will be able to make her own unique contribution to the growth and development of Africa and the world.”
The president further urged Ghanaians to rise above the “hypocrisy” of the National Democratic Congress and focus their energies on building a Ghana Beyond Aid.
“Let us concentrate and spend our energies on working together to achieve that goal of a happy and prosperous Ghana, and reject the hypocrisy of the naysayers who led our country into bankruptcy and the worse economic record of modern Ghanaian history. Let us rise above them, and build the Ghana of our destiny, the land of freedom, justice, progress and prosperity.”
Below is a full speech of the President