President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has pledged to make Accra the neatest and best city in Africa by the end of his first term of office. “The commitment we are making and which I want you all to make with me is that by the time we end our four-year term, Accra is going to be the cleanest city in Africa,” he stated.
He, therefore, enlisted the support and co-operation of the people of Accra in making that dream a reality.
The President made the pledge in an address he delivered after he had been installed a chief by the people of Jamestown and the Ngleshie Alata Traditional Council under the title Nii Kwaku Abladey Okudzeaman I, which means ‘Royal Warrior who champions the welfare of his people’.
His wife was also honoured with the stool name Naa Korkor Abladey Okudzeaman I.
Restoring the beauty of Accra
President Akufo-Addo said the beauty of the national capital had deteriorated over the years as a result of various human activities that had destroyed the once glorious city.
He recalled that when he was growing up in Accra, the Jamestown area was the centre of the city, but said history had taken that away from the good people of the area.
“In our time, we are going to bring back the glory of Jamestown and British Accra,” he stressed.
He said during the campaign time, he promised the people of the area that if he was successful, he would construct a fishing harbour there, and announced, to the delight of the gathering, that plans were far advanced for that project and that by the close of the year, they would start seeing physical work taking place.
When that was completed, he said, “it is going to bring jobs back to Jamestown and restore the lost glory of the area for its young men and women to live gainful and productive lives”.
The President also acceded to a request by the chiefs of the area for the creation of another municipality for New Gbawe and Bortianor and promised that he would look at the proposal, together with the Greater Accra Regional Minister and the Mayor of Accra.
He said the steps being taken to clean up the Korle Lagoon were important for the welfare of Accra and its people.
It was unfortunate, he said, that just like the harbour for the area during former President Kufuor’s time, plans were made and the sod was cut but, since then, nothing was done.
He gave an assurance that those projects would be completed by his government.
Transformation of Ghana
“The transformation that we want for Ghana is a kind of transformation that will cover all parts of the country and Jamestown will not be left out,” he pledged.
President Akufo-Addo was hopeful that with what his government had in mind for the development of Accra, by the time the nation went for its next polls, the Odododiodoo Constituency, which currently belongs to the National Democratic Congress (NDC), would fall to the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
On his new title, he said the chiefs of the area had given him a title that was noteworthy and noble and a standard by which he should measure his life.
“I am going to do everything within my power to live up to the standard that you have given me. I dedicate my life to the service and well-being of the people of Accra, Ngleshie and the whole of Ghana,” he stressed.
Human rights lawyer
Explaining the rationale for the enstoolment, the Jamestown Mantse, Oblempong Nii Kojo Ababio, stated President Akufo-Addo’s career as a human rights lawyer and advocate of the rule of law and the restoration of multi-party democracy was indicative of a man who had the welfare of Ghana at heart.
He said it was for that reason that Ghanaians reposed their confidence in him in the 2016 elections, at a time when the people were dissatisfied with their living conditions.
Oblempong Kojo Ababio was hopeful that under President Akufo-Addo’s tenure, “you will implement programmes and policies that will benefit all Ghanaians, irrespective of their political, religious or ethnic affiliations”.
He urged the President to take urgent steps to modernise Jamestown to ramp up economic activity and bring in its wake jobs and wealth to the people.
“We will remember you in our prayers. We will pray for strength and wisdom for you and I ask all gathered here to unite behind your government to bring prosperity to all,” he said.
He further urged President Akufo-Addo to “leave behind a legacy which will leave the beleaguered people of Accra transformed. I know you, as a born and bred Accra person, have the capacity to transform Accra. You have capable people around you to achieve this Herculean task,” he added.