News

Obama Visit to Highlight Ghana Democracy

Multimedia

Watch or listen to President Obama’s speech live from Ghana, Saturday, 11 July at 1230 UTC.

As Ghana prepares for Friday's arrival of U.S. President Barack Obama, President John Atta Mills says the visit highlights Ghana's democratic credentials. 

Members of the Ghanaian group Friends of Obama ride through the streets of the capital on the back of a truck, handing out t-shirts and encouraging people to come out and cheer the American president when he arrives late Friday.

"From the speeches that he was giving, we realized that there was something about this man. That was the 'Yes We Can' spirit," said Friends of Obama organizer Nancy Sam. "He has brought hope to the world.  And wherever there is peace, he is coming.  Because when you look at African countries, Ghana is one of the peaceful countries.  And this tells us that wherever there is peace, President Obama is going there.  And with that 'Yes We Can' attitude and speech that he has given, it has motivated us."

President Obama says he chose Ghana as his first stop in Sub-Saharan Africa because he wants to highlight stable countries that are governed well, where leadership is accountable to the people and institutions are stronger than any one person.

President John Atta Mills won election earlier this year in a hard-fought, closely-contested vote that saw the ruling party peacefully concede defeat.  President Mills says Ghana is a democratic example that President Obama wants to highlight for the rest of Africa.

"This is the second time in our history that one civilian government has handed over peacefully to another, and I believe that this is something that he wants to commend," President Mills said. "The second one also is our democratic credentials.  I believe that this is something that he admires.  And he wants to seize the opportunity to send out positive signals - especially to our brothers and sisters in Africa - that this is the way to go."

In an interview with VOA, President Mills says all Ghanaians can be proud that America's first black president chose their nation for his first stop in Sub-Saharan Africa.

"Who in Africa does not want an opportunity to meet President Obama?  I am sure there are people who are coming in from our neighboring countries, some I believe from as far as even South Africa.  Everyone wants to see him because he is a hero.  We regard his coming as a homecoming," the president said.

University student Idrissa Karim says President Obama's visit shows that Ghana is on the right path.

"Considering all the African nations, Barack Obama could not choose any other African nation but Ghana.  It tells us how democracy is prevailing, how rule of law is working in Ghana," Karim said.

President Obama meets with President Mills Friday evening before a Saturday breakfast where they will be joined by former Ghanaian leaders John Kufuor and Jerry Rawlings.  Mr. Obama is scheduled to give a speech at the international conference center before he and his family visit Cape Coast Castle, from where slaves were shipped across the Atlantic for nearly 300 years.  

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Interneti
X
Mike O'Sullivan
June 30, 2015 8:20 PM
Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs