President Nana Akufo-Addo has touted the countrys democratic rule, saying the benefits are beginning to show, following the return to constitutional rule in 1992.
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Speaking at a National Thanksgiving Service to celebrate 25 years of democratic rule Sunday at the Black Star Square in Accra, the president observed that the period has seen some important developments.
"We have experienced the longest, uninterrupted period of stable, constitutional governance in our history, banishing the spectre of instability that disfigured the early years of our nation’s existence, and the benefits are showing," he said.
He added: "We have witnessed sustained growths in the size of the economy; rising levels of per capita real incomes; systematic expansion of the private sector; taken strong measures to try to protect our lands, water bodies and environment from the menace of environmental degradation; ensured that efforts to meet the most basic elements of social justice, i.e. education from kindergarten through to secondary school, and accessible healthcare to all our citizens, are ongoing; recorded significant reductions in maternal mortality rates; entrenched media freedom; deepened attachment to the rule of law, probity and accountability, respect for individual liberties, human rights, the principles of democratic accountability and social justice; and created an environment in which government and regulatory policies attempt to enhance, rather than inhibit or frustrate, trade, commerce and investments."
He said democracy, equality of opportunity and respect for human rights, ideals which have stood the test of time, have now found firm anchor in the nation's body politic.
"We have had 5 Presidents in the history of this Republic – their Excellencies Jerry John Rawlings, John Agyekum Kufuor, John Evans Atta-Mills, John Dramani Mahama, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo – with peaceful transfers of power from a governing to an opposition party on three separate occasions. Even when there was disagreement with the outcome of an election, it was the Supreme Court, rather than the streets, that determined its result," he remarked.
The President also highlighted some challenges witnessed since the start of the fourth republic, saying the country has not reached the potential it should have.
He said: "The biggest challenge we face continues to be eradicating widespread poverty. We still have challenges in the performance of our public services; we face threats, traditional and contemporary, to our nation’s security and social stability, in the form of chieftaincy conflicts, land disputes, ethnic conflicts, vigilantism, cyber security issues, youth unemployment, economic hardships, and corruption in our public life."