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.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs