Charlotte Mofatt presenting a bouquet to H.M Queen Mathilde, Queen of Belgium at the Kotoka International Airport yesterday
Queen Mathilde of Belgium arrived in the country yesterday for a three-day official visit.
The Belgian Royal, who is a United Nations Advocate for the (UN’s) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s), was met on arrival at the Jubilee Lounge of the Kotoka International Airport by the Minister for Planning, Professor Gyan-Baffour and a team of government officials.
She was accompanied by the Belgian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation, Alexander De Croo.
Whilst in Ghana, Queen Mathilde would inspect local projects aimed at empowering women and giving girls access to quality education and health care.
She is expected to pay a courtesy call on President Akufo-Addo at the Flagstaff House on Friday, after which she would have the honour to join the president to deliver a lecture on the topic, ‘The SDGs: A Transformative Agenda for the Future we Want,’ at the University of Ghana, Legon.
Queen Mathilde of Belgium (born Jonkvrouw Mathilde d’Udekem d’Acoz on 20th January, 1973) is the wife of King Phillipe, who ascended the Belgian throne following the abdication of his father, King Albert, on 21st July, 2013. She is the first Belgian-born queen consort of the Belgians.
Queen Mathilde assists King Philippe in carrying out his functions as head of state. These include numerous visits to institutions, contacts with the population, ceremonies in Belgium and abroad, state visits, promoting Belgium’s image abroad, audience with representatives of various groups in society and countless trips all over the country.
Apart from her activities in the company of King Philippe, Queen Mathilde also devotes time to issues that are close to her heart.
She regularly visits social institutions and medical centres.
These contacts help her to stay in touch with the people and their needs and with the many initiatives undertaken in Belgium to help others.
With Philippe, she has led economic missions to the USA in 2011 and Vietnam in 2012.
Since 2009, Queen Mathilde has been the honorary president of UNICEF Belgium.
She serves as the World Health Organisation’s (WHO’s) Special Representative for Immunization.
She set up the Princess Mathilde Fund (now the Queen Mathilde Fund) in 2001, which promotes the care of vulnerable people and awards an annual prize for good works in a particular sector.
The sector changes each year. Some of the sectors are early year’s education, women’s health and protection of young people from violence.
Queen Mathilde deploys the Queen’s Charities to offer help to citizens who are struggling to cope with financial hardships in their daily lives and often turn to her as a last resort.
By Charles Takyi-Boadu, Presidential Correspondent