President Akufo Addo, Ghana & Youth Development

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By Janet Abena Quainoo

Ghana had seen various leadership styles and types since its independence from British domination on March 6, 1957, and today has emerged as an example for many countries, from military juntas to democratically elected administrations on the continent.

The journey between March 6, 1957, and March 6, 1992, could be nothing better than experimental. As a country, Ghana has experienced a blend of all there is in political leadership, be it constitutional or military. Arguably, the country’s resolve to get things right led to the promulgation of the 1992 constitution, which has made the country an envy of its contemporaries.

The constitution, which was adopted on April 28, 1992, provided the nation with its fifth president, His Excellency Akufo-Addo, and looked to pave the way for the relative stability that has prevailed since then. Presidents like John Agyekum Kufuor, the late John Evans Atta Mills, and John Dramani Mahama all served their terms within the mandate of the 1992 constitution.

On his second attempt, after winning the election to lead his party in 2008, he was defeated by Professor John Evans Atta Mill of the National Democratic Congress (NDC). On his third trial, he won in a landslide, deposing former President John Mahama, seeking reelection after serving his first term.

President Akufo Addo took office on January 7, 2017, after winning elections in 2016. He famously called on Ghanaians to take an active role in his leadership rather than be bystanders. The well-placed call was met with high expectations from all quarters, especially Ghana’s young people.

One of the President’s youth-focused legacies is making good his promise of free secondary education for public senior high schools (SHS) – a truly generational altering commitment. By this free SHS, there will be no admission fee, no library fee, no science centre fee, no computer lab fee, no examination fee, and no utility fee; there will be free textbooks, free boarding, and free meals, and day students will get a meal at school for free. Free SHS also covered agricultural, vocational and technical institutions at the high school levels.

Click HERE TO ACCESS THE FULL STORY on pages 13 – 14 of the August 2021 edition of the African Leadership Magazine

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