President Akufo-Addo with Jeremy Corbyn
President Akufo-Addo yesterday met Jeremy Corbyn, leader of United Kingdom’s main opposition Labour Party.
The meeting was held behind closed doors on the sidelines of the ongoing 25th Commonwealth Heads of Government (CHOGM) in London.
In a statement after the meeting, Director of Communications at the Jubilee House in Ghana, Eugene Arhin, indicated that President Akufo-Addo stressed the need for Ghana and the United Kingdom to continue to maintain a strong bond of friendship and co-operation, adding that the UK remains one of Ghana’s most significant trading partners, and a major source of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
As members of the Commonwealth, the president said that Ghana and the United Kingdom should continue to share common values of democratic accountability, good governance, respect for individual liberties, human rights and the rule of law.
President Akufo-Addo and Mr Jeremy Corbyn also discussed issues bordering on the deepening of democracy amongst member states of the Commonwealth, the worsening humanitarian crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Syria, United Nations Reforms, in particular reform of the UN Security Council, BREXIT, increase in trade co-operation between Ghana and the UK and migration.
Touching on the problem of migration, President Akufo-Addo noted that the structure of most of the economies in Africa had been dependent, largely, on the production and export of raw materials.
These economies, he noted, cannot create opportunities, wealth and prosperity for the African peoples – a situation which he observed, had fuelled the waves of migration of African youth from the continent to Europe in search of jobs.
It is for this reason that President Akufo-Addo told Mr Jeremy Corbyn that Ghana had decided to turn its back on the “old economy” and focus her energies on building an industrialised, value-added economy, with a modernised agriculture, which takes full advantage of the digital revolution.
He added that discussions on migration and refugees could not be complete without also including discussions on the nature of African economies, as it is only such a comprehensive discussion which leads to appropriate policies that will enable satisfactory solutions to be found to the crises of refugees and migration.
President Akufo-Addo invited the Labour Party leader – whose parliamentary constituency of Islington North has a high concentration of Ghanaians – to visit Ghana later in the year; and his host warmly accepted the invitation.
From Charles Takyi-Boadu, London