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NPP Urges Leaders To Empower Africans   
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The New Patriotic Party (NPP) believes that the 21st Century is for Africans to build and capitalise efficiently on the rich human and economic resources.

This, the party again believes, will help to build across the vast continent free interconnected societies of opportunities and aspirations for every African.

In a statement to mark AU Day, it said that what Africa needed were educated and skilled competitive people who were free, and encouraged, to create wealth for themselves and for the greater benefit of our societies.

The NPP joined all the peoples of Africa in celebrating the golden jubilee anniversary of the African Union, formerly the Organisation of African Unity, on Saturday.

According to the statement jointly signed by Mr Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, NPP Chairman, and Mr Kwadwo Owusu-Afriyie, NPP General Secretary, “ in this fiercely competitive world of economic blocs, the AU needs now more than ever leadership -- clear economic and political leadership committed to delivering.”

It said that Africa needed a leadership devoted to building transnational infrastructure and harmonising rules to facilitate the free movement of people, goods, services and ideas.

Politicians, the party stated, must give the people and businesses a far greater chance to help bring our nations and peoples together economically and socially.

It also called for the empowerment of the private sector to play a leading role in the integration process.

But to do so, the party stressed the need to enhance the confidence of the peoples in the multiparty democratic path that we have opted to travel on, saying “The days when membership of the AU was merely geographic must give way to membership strictly by shared democratic principles.”

To achieve this, the NPP opined that national elections must truly reflect the democratic choices of the people by being free, fair and credible.

Furthermore, it said that those elected to lead must be held accountable to their promises and stewardship and give the people the value for money services.

Additionally, it said that civil societies and the private sector must be respected partners in this new leadership project.

Finally, the can-do spirit of the African must reign; which means our leaders must believe more in the capacity of the African people and empower them to lead the development project.

It called on Africans to approach this century with the confidence of a people who believed that this was their time and it was up to them to make it happen. We must empower the African to make it happen, it concluded.

The NPP recalled (with pride) its roots directly to the first political party set up in the Gold Coast in 1947 to lead the struggle against colonial rule, the United Gold Coast Convention.

The leaders of the UGCC included Paa Grant, J B Danquah, Edward Akufo-Addo, Emmanuel Obetsebi-Lamptey, Emmanuel Ako Adjei and Kwame Nkrumah, with Nkrumah moving on to become the popular driver for the de-colonialisation and unity of Africa.

Fifty years on, the one billion people of our diverse and resourceful continent still see the unity project as very much an unfinished business.

The instability, socialism and dictatorship that hampered progress for most of the first three decades have now given way to a renewed consciousness gingerly driven by the principles of the rule of law, democratic accountability, respect for human rights, individual liberty and a market economy.
Source: Daily Graphic

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