The First Lady, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, has been named the Nutrition Champion for Ghana by the co-founders and eminent leaders of the high-level African Leaders for Nutrition (ALN) initiative.
Mrs Akufo-Addo, who is also the Founder of the Rebecca Foundation, joins Mr Hery Rajaonarimampianina, the President of Madagascar; His Majesty King Letsie III of the Kingdom of Lesotho, and the African Union Nutrition Champion, Dr Howarth Bouis, acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of HarvestPlus, as the 2018 Nutrition Champions.
The inauguration was done by former President John Agyekum Kufuor, who is the Founder of the John Agyekum Kufuor Foundation and Co-chair of the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition, as well as Co-founder of the ALN.
African leaders for nutrition
In a brief remark, the First Lady expressed gratitude to the ALN initiative, spearheaded by the African Development Bank, “for deeming me fit to be a Champion for Nutrition”.
“I acknowledge the instrumental role played by former President Kufuor in the establishment of the ALN Nutrition and for personally nominating me as an ALN Champion. His steadfast energy and commitment to development in Ghana and Africa should inspire us all to create a better world for ourselves and future generations,” she said.
Read also:First Lady launches project for girl school drop outs
She also applauded the contribution of Dr Akinwuni Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and Chairperson of the ALN initiative.
On her mandate as the Nutrition Champion for Africa, Mrs Akufo-Addo indicated that working with the Kufuor Foundation, the ALN initiative and other stakeholders, “I will employ creative and ingenious strategies to achieve the ultimate goal of entrenching proper nutrition in Africa”.
Describing malnutrition as unacceptable, she said the issue of nutrition struck the very future of the African continent and "we are losing about a quarter of the continent’s future potential leaders to malnutrition”.
“I consider it a great opportunity, therefore, to be called upon by the ALN initiative to serve my dear country Ghana and Africa as a whole in the capacity of Champion of Nutrition. It is a charge I do not take lightly,” she added.
While declaring that “eliminating malnutrition is achievable in our lifetime”, she called for sustained high-level political leadership and commitment to end malnutrition in Africa.