Mr. Vice President, the Chief of Staff, Ministers of State, the media, invited guests, fellow Ghanaians, distinguished ladies and gentlemen.
Three (3) weeks ago, I constituted a Planning Committee to oversee the commemoration of our Nation’s 60th birthday.
Do we have reason to Celebrate? Yes. Do we have reason to Reflect? Yes. Do we have reason to Challenge ourselves today? Yes!
There are Ghanaians, many of them unsung, who have distinguished themselves quietly, meaningfully, modestly, some have blazed a trail in this country and across the world. Yes! We must tell the Ghanaian story first to ourselves.
I also asked specifically that the 60th Anniversary Commemoration be modest. I am pleased to announce that, under the able-chairmanship of Ken Amankwah, the National Planning Committee has provided an agenda that I can sign up to.
Today, I unveil the logo and the theme. We are an industrious and determined people and together we can and must build our beloved nation. It is appropriate then, that the theme of this programme should be one of Reflection, Celebration, Challenge and Togetherness.
Ladies and gentlemen, our theme is “Mobilizing for Ghana’s Future” and the accompanying logo can be seen on the screen. This logo symbolizes the diversity and unity of our country, and the aspirations of the Ghanaian people for a dignified and prosperous future.
I was a young boy when our forbearers stood up and sacrificed in diverse ways for our freedom. I know that the torch of Independence was laid well and still burns, in many hearts across the country. It was the dream of the founders of our nation that Ghana, free, progressive, prosperous Ghana, will be the beacon of Africa and the light of the world. That dream still lives on. It is a dream that has been nurtured by great patriots through the ages – John Mensah Sarbah, Joseph Casely-Hayford, George Paa Grant, Joseph Boakye Danquah and Kwame Nkrumah amongst many many others. Our generation will continue to be inspired by that dream.
On March 6th, we will celebrate with the traditional march past and we will enable each Region begin to tell its own story in its own voice.
Over the course of the year, the “Ghana: 60 years on” torch will move from Region to Region encouraging citizens to participate where they lived and worked, supporting domestic tourism and an opportunity daily to reflect, celebrate, renew and challenge ourselves to define the spirit, “I Am A Ghanaian”.
The very foundation on which we stand, which ten years ago was christened by its builder, President John Agyekum Kufuor, as Jubilee House was meant to commemorate the 50th Anniversary, the Golden Jubilee, of our nation.
On my part, I have instructed the Planning Committee to come up with a plan to develop significant projects that can stand as national monuments for this Diamond Jubilee.
Marking such an occasion will cost us some money. This Diamond Jubilee Commemoration is estimated to cost some Twenty Million Ghana Cedis (Ghc 20,000,000.00) and I am hoping that individual Ghanaians, the private sector and corporate Ghana in particular, will provide the funds for this anniversary. My ambition is to commemorate this anniversary with a minimal or no burden at all on the National Treasury.
This must be a Ghanaian undertaking in its true sense and I am appealing to all Ghanaians to chip in to make a success of this important undertaking.
In the coming weeks and over the course of the Anniversary year, each of us will have an opportunity to renew our commitment to this blessed land, Ghana. Let us continue to mobilize for Ghana’s future and give meaning to the statement I am a Ghanaian.
God bless our Homeland Ghana, and make her great and strong.
I thank you all for coming.