Some issues Akufo-Addo missed in his State of the Nation Address

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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday, March 9, 2021, delivered what was his first State Nation Address in his second term presidency.

As demanded by Article 67 of the 1992 Constitution, the President in his address gave an overview of the nation’s current state covering various sectors of national development.

Even though the President could not possibly speak on all matters in his address, it was expected that he would highlight and address some specific issues owing to their timing and relevance.

LBGTQ+ legalization
The President Speaking at a Church event in Asante Mampong on Sunday, February 28, 2021, reaffirmed his position against the legalization of same-sex marriage in the country.

Speaking at the event to outdoor the second Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Ghana, President Akufo-Addo stated:

“It will not be under the presidency of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo that same-sex marriage will be legalized in Ghana; it will never happen in my time as president.”

The President’s statement came at the back of a renewed advocacy for the legalization and recognition of LGBTQ+ rights in the country, and the opening of an office by the community at Kwabenya, the office has since been shut down.

Having already stated his position on the legalization, the President was however expected to give concrete plans on how his government intends to manage the LGBTQ+ situation especially when the recent development had exposed shortfalls in the nation’s constitutional provisions on same-sex activities.

Dual carriage roads

For years, the need for Ghana’s major highways to be developed into dual carriage roads has been discussed extensively. A rising spate of recent deadly accidents has resurrected the conversation.

Despite the President stating that this year was going to be a continuation of his government’s ‘year of roads’ policy, many expected Tuesday’s address to provide details on how the government intends to manage the issue of highway infrastructure and the possibility of government moving to dualize major roads in the country.

The Apam drowning incident

Scores of teenagers went missing on Sunday, March 7, 2021, when they went swimming in the sea at Apam.

Unconfirmed reports put the total number of children around 20 and by morning on Monday, 12 of the children were retrieved from the sea dead.

The President speaking in Parliament a day after the tragedy failed to mention the incident. It happened at the back of a ban on beaches instituted by the President as part of measures aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19.

The President was thus expected to reaffirm the need to adhere to the ban and as well commiserate with the families of the deceased in his address.

Even though the President has yet to officially speak on the tragedy, he has through the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mavis Hawa Koomson commiserated with the families and made a presentation to the families and chiefs of Apam.

The donation by the President among other things is to facilitate the conduct of funerals and also for rituals and sacrifices by the traditional leaders to pacify the gods owing to the accident.

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