President launches “Beyond the Return” initiative

By Ken Sackey, GNA 

Accra, Dec. 29, GNA – President Nana Addo
Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the weekend launched the “Beyond the Return, The Diaspora
Dividend” Initiative, a move to enable Ghana derive maximum benefits from and
build on the dividends of the “Year of Return” chatter.

The Year of Return Ghana 2019, a Government
initiative, which ends in January, 2020, is intended to encourage African
diasporans to come to Ghana to settle and invest on the continent.

The move had put a positive spotlight on
Ghana and attracted many people of African descent, mainly from the Caribbean
and the USA to Ghana in the past few months.

At a brief ceremony in Accra, the President
said as the curtain drew on “Year of Return” initiative; it was time
to engage Africans in the Diaspora and all persons of African descent to help
make Ghana and Africa a place for investment and economic development.

He said the launch of the ‘Beyond the
Return’ campaign was to assist those who have decided to settle in Ghana and
other parts of Africa, assimilate into the society “so we can derive maximum
dividends from our relations in mutually beneficial co-operation, and as
partners for shared growth and development”.

President Akufo-Addo who cited the
contribution of Chinese diasporans to the growth of China’s economy, he noted
that China’s transformation into manufacturing powerhouse in the 1990’s was
realized mainly because Chinese in the Diaspora shore up the economy with
billions of dollars.

He held that just like Chinese Diasporans
were critical to the rise of the Asian economic giant, African ought do same
for the African continent, saying, “That is why I am excited and keen on this
new initiative of “Beyond the Return”, and the renewed enthusiasm around
building Africa together.

“Let us imbibe in ourselves a deep
consciousness and understanding of the goals and histories of the African
peoples…Let us all remember that the destiny of all black people no matter
where they are in the world is bound up with Africa.

“We must help make Africa the place for
investment, progress and prosperity and not from where our youth flee in the
hope of accessing the mirage of a better life in Europe or the Americas”
the President said.

He called on all people of African descent
around the world to make the 21st century count for the continent, by building
on the progress made so far to see the growth of modern, prosperous,
technologically-advanced nations within a united Africa, to bring dignity and
respect to black people all over the world.