President Akufo-Addo attends NAM anniversary

BY: Donald Ato Dapatem
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Add
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Add

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is in Belgrade, Serbia to attend the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

The President, who left Accra last Saturday, is scheduled to deliver a statement during the celebration to reaffirm Ghana’s commitment to the principles of the movement.

A statement issued by the Presidency on his travel said President Akufo-Addo was accompanied by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey; a daughter of Ghana’s first

President, Ms Samia Nkrumah, who is also a former Member of Parliament for Jomoro and former Chairperson of the Convention People’s Party, as well as officials of the Presidency and the Foreign Ministry.

The President will return to Ghana tomorrow, and in his absence the Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, shall, in accordance with Article 60(8) of the Constitution, act in his stead.

Engagements

The statement further indicated that while in Belgrade, President Akufo-Addo would hold bilateral talks with his Serbian counterpart, Mr Aleksandar Vučić, aimed at strengthening the ties of co-operation between the two countries.

He is also expected to meet the Prime Minister of Algeria and the Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia on the sidelines of the anniversary celebration to discuss matters of mutual interest.

NAM

The NAM is a forum of 120 developing states that are not formally aligned with any major power bloc. It was launched in Belgrade in 1961 as a bid to avoid taking sides between the parties caught in the Cold War.

Dr Kwame Nkrumah was one of the five historic founding fathers of the movement. The others were Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru of India, President Ahmed Sukarno of Indonesia, President Gamel Abdel Nasser of Egypt and President Josip Broz Tito of the then Yugoslavia.

After the United Nations, NAM is the largest grouping of states worldwide.

The government of Serbia is organising a commemorative event in Belgrade on October 11 and 12 to mark the 60th anniversary of the first NAM Conference in Belgrade.

In 1991, Ghana hosted the NAM Foreign Ministers Meeting at the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) and it had all the foreign ministers of member countries in attendance.

Uganda is scheduled to host the 19th Summit of the movement in December 2023. The summit, held every three years, was to have been held this year but was rescheduled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.