President Uhuru Kenyatta has said there is room for increased trade and investment between Kenya and Ghana in the spirit of Pan-Africanism.
Although the two countries have continued to enjoy trade between them, President Kenyatta noted they could do even better.
“Let us continue to interact with each other so as to forge partnerships that will lead to more business, more skills transfer and complement the magnificent tourism sector that exists in our two countries,” President Kenyatta said.
He said this on Sunday (March 6) when he joined President John Dramani Mahama and the people of Ghana in celebrations to mark the Western African nation’s 59th Independence Day anniversary that was also attended by President Jose Mario Vaz of Guinea-Bissau at the Black Star Square in Accra.
According to a statement from the State House, the reciprocal visit to Ghana by President Kenyatta follows President Mahama’s visit in 2014 when he also attended celebrations to mark Kenya’s 51st Jamhuri Day at the Nyayo Stadium.
President Kenyatta urged Kenya and Ghana to harmonize their vision with the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) that is supported by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the East African Community (EAC).
“We take pride in the fact that visa requirements between our two countries are non-existent and our national carrier – Kenya Airways – has daily flights to Accra,” President Kenyatta said.
He affirmed his commitment to a borderless Africa, saying he looked forward to working closely with President Mahama and other African leaders to realize that target.
In his speech to Ghanaians and the rest of Africa, President Mahama announced that as from July, Ghana will offer visas on arrival to citizens of all 54 African Union (AU) member states. This is set to increase trade and tourism activities in the Western African country.
Fighting terrorism in the region
Speaking of the war on terrorism, the Kenyan President said terrorist attacks will not be allowed to become “the norm rather than the exception”, underscoring the key role of peace and security in economic growth and sustainable development.
“We must come together to defeat the enemy that is threatening our peoples’ way of life,” President Kenyatta said.
He added that Kenya is ready to work with Ghana to deepen cooperation for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
Africa Agenda 2063
The launch of the Africa Agenda 2063 was formed to enhance the Pan-Africanism vision. The aim of the Agenda is to bring people in the continent together.
“The Agenda is another expression of our determination to bring the people of Africa closer together, amalgamate their ideas and ensure integration for sustained socio-economic and political development of the continent,” President Kenyatta noted.
He said the deliberate shift to boost intra-Africa trade should be supported by all African countries.
Expressing his gratitude to President Kenyatta, for honoring the invitation to attend Ghana’s 59th Independence Day anniversary, the Ghanaian leader also praised the role played by the founding fathers of African nations, singling out Presidents Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and Kwame Nkurumah for special appreciation.
“The reason why we gather each year to celebrate the Independence Day is to acknowledge the role played by our freedom heroes. Without their struggle and sacrifices, African countries would not be where they are today,” President Mahama noted.
He called on African leaders to exercise their responsibility to safeguard independence so as to bequeath African future generations with nations that are free, peaceful and democratic.
Image Credit: PSCU