Grenada will support Ghana’s candidate for post of Commonwealth Secretary General

The content originally appeared on: Caribbean News Service

Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell on Tuesday said Grenada will be supporting Ghana’s foreign affairs minister to become the next Secretary General of the Commonwealth when the election is held in October.

The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 56 independent and equal countries in Africa, Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Pacific. It is home to one-third of the world’s population and includes both advanced economies and developing countries.

Earlier this month Ghana’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey launched a bid to replace the Dominican-born Dame Patricia Scotland, who served two terms at the head of then London-based Commonwealth grouping.

So far, no other contender has emerged for the top post ahead of the scheduled October 22 election. A Commonwealth Secretary-General can serve a maximum of two terms of four years each.

“I will be publicly indicating that we have pledged to the President of Ghana that we will be supporting the distinguished nomination of the foreign minister of Ghana to lead the commonwealth when that time arises,” Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell told a joint sitting of the Lower and Upper House after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana addressed the sitting.

He is the first African president to officially visit Grenada since the 1980s and is the guest of honour for the 50th Independence celebrations on Wednesday.

The joint sitting of Parliament allowed legislators to “record fervent independence wishes to all citizens of the State of Grenada.” The sitting was preceded by a military parade with the Ghanaian head of state inspected the guards.

In his address, President Akufo-Add said that while Grenada and other Caribbean people may have started life as slaves, their contribution made to the development of the western hemisphere cannot be matched.

He pointed to the inventions of Black people such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), closed-circuit television (CCTV) and caller identification on telephones, saying these inventions have become integral to global development.

The Ghanaian head of state expressed his appreciation for the high standard of hospitality being experienced in Grenada and used the occasion to extend an invitation to Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell to officially visit Ghana.

“I look forward to returning this hospitality in Accra and he better hurry up and come because I am in the last year of my two-term tenure of eight years as Ghana’s president,” he told legislators.

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