Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey (left) with Joseph U. Oji
The West and Central Africa Regional Advisor and Cluster Leader of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Joseph U. Oji, has paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey.
The visit was aimed at informing the Minister about preparations for the upcoming November 2019 Annual Meeting of the UNDP scheduled to take place in Ghana.
Some 45 UNDP representatives from Sub-Saharan Africa are expected to convene in Accra for the cluster meeting.
The objective of the cluster meeting is to strengthen UNDP’s support for African countries towards achieving their national development aspirations, the African Union’s Agenda 2063 as well as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
It will also examine how best the UNDP can champion advocacy and discourse on the future of Africa’s development based on the Continent’s Beyond Aid Agenda which is being actively championed by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
During the visit, Madam Ayorkor Botchwey referred to the visit of the four-member High-Level Technical Mission from the UNDP Headquarters, in New York in August, 2019.
She expressed the hope that the outcome of their mission to Accra was well received.
The Minister informed the Representative that the President of Ghana will be available to host the 2019 Annual Meeting of the UNDP in Accra on Thursday, November 7, 2019.
She emphasized that the Government of Ghana, in furtherance of its unwavering commitment to the UNDP and the UN system as a whole, and her determination to promote continental development with Africa’s own resources, will play the essential supportive role for the holding of a successful cluster meeting in Ghana.
According to her, the Ministry was favourably considering the request for the designation of a technical focal point to follow-up on various technical aspects of the organization, and will soon communicate the name and particulars of the designated officer to the UNDP Country Office in Ghana.
She noted that it was a good news for the UNDP to have chosen Ghana for the meeting.
She was happy to note that Africa has a bright future and that Beyond Aid was the way to go.
According to her, people are becoming more affluent in Africa, living longer and that the gender gap was being bridged.
Meanwhile, she thanked the UNDP Regional Representative for the visit and reassured him of the Government of Ghana’s commitment to the shared aspirations of a far-reaching economic transformation of the African continent for the well-being of all Africans.
On his part, Mr. Oji briefed the Minister about the various activities for the meeting.
According to him, there will be a Presidential Dialogue on November 7, 2019.
President Akufo-Addo is to preside over the Presidential Dialogue segment that is expected to draw the participation of other African Presidents.
On November 12, the Representative noted, there will be the UNDP Regional Board Meeting in Accra.
BY Melvin Tarlue