Guinea-Bissau President lauds Ghana’s leadership in Africa (PHOTOS)

The President of Guinea-Bissau, Umaru Sissoco Embalo, has commended Ghana for playing a leading role in the independence struggle on the African continent. 

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He said the exceptional leadership demonstrated by Ghana’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, gave hope to many African countries in the independence struggle. 

At the 66th Independence Day celebration at Adaklu Tsrefe, near Ho in the Volta Region yesterday, Mr Embalo, who is also the Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), said Ghana remained a strong force Africa looked up to for democratic governance. 

“Nkrumah’s legacy is still valid for the whole of Africa,” President Embalo, the special guest at the event said.

He added that the people of Guinea-Bissau remained grateful to Ghana for supporting that country's democratic journey.
                   
Bilateral cooperation

President Embalo said his country looked forward to greater bilateral corporation with Ghana towards improving the welfare of their peoples and social development in both countries.

The celebration was on the theme: “Our unity, our strength, our purpose”.

The special guest said he was highly honoured to take part in the Independence Day celebration as Ghana still stood tall with gallantry for the liberation of the African continent.

The celebration took part on a carnival note with a large number of people from all works of life turning up at the venue long before sunrise.

When President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo turned up at the venue soon after 10 a.m., the crowd burst into a state of euphoria with loud applause as he lit the perpetual flame.

The day also featured thrilling cultural displays, with chiefs from more than 50 paramountcies in the region and others present.

Among them were the Chairman of the Council of State and Omanhene of the Juaben Traditional Area, Nana Otuo Siriboe II; the President of the Volta Region House of Chiefs and Paramount Chief of Anfoega, Togbe Tepre Hodo IV; the Agbogbomefia of the Asogli State, Togbe Afede XIV, the Awomefia of Anlo, Torgbui Sri II; the Paramount Chief of Adaklu, Togbe Gbogbi Atsa V; the Paramount Chief of Ziavi, Togbe Kwaku Ayim IV, and the Paramount Chief of Klefe, Togbe Kwaku Dzaga.
                                  
Activities on the ground

The Youth Resource Centre at Adaklu Tsrefe, near Ho, the Volta regional capital, was a sight to behold as the security agencies treated members of the public who converged there for Ghana’s 66th Independence anniversary to artistic display of skills and drills. 

The 20 contingents drawn from the various security agencies, namely the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF), Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), the Ghana Prisons Service, the Ghana Police Service, the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), as well as the National Ambulance Service (NAS) engaged in a quick match past, after performing various drills.

The GAF, in particular, performed more drills and displayed essential skills, including risky rescue operations and gymnastic displays to the admiration of spectators. 

Besides the security services, 14 selected senior high and basic schools also took part in the march past at the centre.

Displays

The displays by the security commenced with soldiers from the physical training school of the GAF, based at the El-Wak Barracks.

They engaged in physical fitness displays and rescue exercises. 

Led by Lt Paa Kwesi Owusu of the 66 Regiment, the officers engaged in a series of ground operations, including forehead springs, dive and roll in pairs, running hand springs in pairs, staggered dive and roll, front somersault in pairs as well as individual skills.

The breath-taking moment for the gathering was when the soldiers took a dive and somersaulted through the loop with flames of fire around it.

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The team also engaged in gymnastic displays including the pyramid formation.

As if that was not enough, the Special Force Unit of  theGAF took the display to another level with deployments of ground troops to support an air assault team on a mock risky mission to rescue a government appointee from terrorists who are demanding hefty ransom. 

About 10 rescuers, with a Belgian trained dog, Hazy, rappelled down a helicopter that hung about 70 metres from the ground to conduct the rescue exercise. 

Equipment

Aside from the gymnastics, the security agencies also demonstrated their capacity to execute their mandate with the showcasing of sophisticated weapons, armored vehicles, fire-fighting equipment, helicopters, motorbikes for improved visibility and other resources. 

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The Ghana Police Service also showcased some equipment and new units such as the Canine Unit and the Formed Police Unit, alongside crowd control vehicles and three helicopters.

A 21-gun salute by the GAF was flooded by fly pasts by a fighter jet, heralding the end of the parade and an invitation to the President to deliver the anniversary speech.

With patriotic songs in a background, the gun salute was sounded amid cheers from the crowd.

Cars and human beings competed for space at the venue, giving security personnel a hectic time controlling the crowd at the celebration which witnessed no untoward incident.

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