Francia Marquez Mina (right), Vice-President of Columbia, in discussions with Dr Mahamudu Bawumia (left), Vice-President, during a meeting at the Jubilee House. Picture: SAMUEL TEI ADANO
Francia Marquez Mina (right), Vice-President of Columbia, in discussions with Dr Mahamudu Bawumia (left), Vice-President, during a meeting at the Jubilee House. Picture: SAMUEL TEI ADANO

We’ll tap your expertise in technology - Dr Bawumia to Colombian counterpart

The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has said that the country will learn from the expertise of Colombia in the application of digital technology.


He said digital technology could be used to help the vulnerable and the poor, and also accelerate the development of the country.

Colombia has one of the fastest growing information technology industries in the world.

Dr Bawumia was speaking during a bilateral meeting with the Vice-President of Colombia, Francia Elena Marquez Mina, at the Jubilee House in Accra yesterday, after which they briefed the press.

Ms Mina, who is on a two-day visit to the country, was accompanied by her spouse and other officials from her country.

After the meeting with the Vice-President, she visited the Cape Coast and Elmina Castles.

Ms Mina would also call on the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, in Kumasi and later interact with the Colombian community, including investors in the country.

Strengthening of ties

The Vice-President said the country would also leverage its position as the host of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTA) secretariat to further strengthen its bilateral and economic relations with Colombia.

He described Ghana as the most peaceful country in West Africa and the second most peaceful in Africa, saying, “we in Ghana are very thankful for the peace and political stability in the country”.

Dr Bawumia said the two countries had signed several agreements which were at different stages of implementation.

He gave an assurance that both countries would continue to work together on issues relating to the environment, empowerment and gender equality which “are some of the areas President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is concerned about”.

He further recalled the historic relations between Ghana and Colombia and said that Ghana would reciprocate Colombia’s gesture by establishing an embassy in that country.

Colombia opened its embassy in Ghana in 2013 as part of efforts to strengthen the existing bond.

“I also want to thank the government of Colombia for their effort in the teaching of the Spanish language to our diplomats,” the Vice-President added.

He said Ghana had decided to join the Pacific Alliance countries, made up of Peru, Mexico, Chile and Colombia as an observer nation which decision Parliament was yet to approve.

“We are very proud that in the whole of West Africa, we are the host of diplomatic missions of countries of the Pacific Alliance,” the Vice-President added.


On tourism, Dr Bawumia highlighted events such as PANAFEST, Year of Return and Beyond the Return which he said were to ensure “our brothers and sisters in the diaspora can come back and experience their heritage.”

The Vice-President extended an invitation to the Colombian Vice-President, saying “we want to see Afro Caribbeans in particular come and participate in these events”.

Dr Bawumia commended Ms Mina on her election as the first Afro Colombian female Vice-President and said it was a historic achievement for all Afro Colombians and Africans.


For her part, Vice-President Mina, who spoke through an interpretor, expressed worry about the changing  climate conditions and said although both countries lacked the resources to tackle the problem, there was the need to work to ensure climate sustainability to decarbonise the environment.


“We have lots of experience in agriculture and we would also like to share our experience on, particularly, rice production,” she added.

Ms Mina acknowledged the economic difficulties confronting the country in terms of indebtedness and said that Colombia was also facing similar problems.

The Colombian Vice-President also urged both countries to do more in the promotion of the rights of people, particularly women.

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