President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has urged chief executive officers (CEOs) of leading Ghanaian and multinational businesses operating in the country to help in the realisation and implementation of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
He described the CEOs as “the primary promoters of social and economic transformation” who were key to the success of the SDGs.
Speaking at a breakfast meeting with CEOs at the Banquet Hall of the Jubilee House yesterday, the President explained that his role as co-Chair of the Advocates Group of Eminent Personalities on the SDGs was to mobilise political support on the continent for the attainment of the goals.
“I am going to bring you on board the process of making sure that these goals are implemented and brought to a successful end,” he told the CEOs.
He stated that the SDGs must not remain within the public consciousness as “some abstract remote phenomenon that is debated among a few political leaders and bureaucrats on the floors of the General Assembly of the United Nations”.
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Rather, he said, they must “become an active set of goals within the public consciousness because people can recognise that they do affect all of us”.
President Akufo-Addo, who is also the African Union (AU) Gender Champion, stated that gender equity was one of the goals of the SDGs that should have moved from the area of rhetoric into reality.
He said that statement affected more than majority of people in the country, adding: “We know that 52 per cent of our population are women. When we are talking about gender equity, we are talking about what affects all women, young and old.”
Touching on education, he said, “We know the importance of education in our country. We have made a huge commitment to ensure that every Ghanaian child is able to go to school, at least within the present context to secondary school level, and it is an extremely important tool for the future development of our country.”
With the SDGs presenting the world with a unique opportunity to fight inequality on all fronts, wipe out extreme poverty, tackle the issues of climate change and reverse the degradation and unsustainable use of environmental resources, the President said, the attainment of those goals should be of utmost importance to the CEOs in their daily lives.
“These are some of the broad goals that I am hoping to realise. We have a relatively short period to be together, but I am hoping that in this relatively short period, and in subsequent engagements that we are going to have, we will be able to address these goals of this meeting that we have set up,” he added.