President Nana Akufo-Addo says the celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the 4th Republic is to the great credit of the Ghanaians.
He said 25 years ago, Ghanaians resolved to build under God, a united nation, grounded in democratic values and the rule of law, and, largely, have gone a long way towards realising it.
The President said this on Sunday at the Independence Square, at an interfaith Thanksgiving service held to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of the establishment of the 4th Republic.
The Constitution became effective on January 7, 1993, following the decision of the Ghanaians, given in overwhelming numbers, to adopt it as the fundamental law of the land in the Referendum of April 28, 1992.
The overwhelming vote was 3,408,119 representing 92.59%, in favour, with 272,855 votes against, which is 7.41%.
The 4th Republic was, therefore, declared with an immense popular backing which saw Jerry John Rawlings sworn into office as the 1st President of the 4th Republic. On January 7, 1993.
For this reason, the President Akufo-Addo commended the erstwhile Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), the 1991 Consultative Assembly, the Movement for Freedom and Justice (MFJ), the pro-democracy organisations, civil society and religious bodies, whose collective efforts and agitations led to the birth of the 4th Republic.
He also paid tribute to Parliament, under the leadership of successive Speakers – Justice D.F. Annan, Peter Ala Adjetey, Ebenezer Sekyi Hughes, Justice Joyce Bamford-Addo, Edward Doe Adjaho, and, currently, Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye.
He lauded them for growing stronger in stature, and in its contribution to good governance.
“In ensuring that the commitment made 25 years ago to embark on the journey of multiparty democracy resounds strongly, one of the most important actors in the preservation of this has been the Judiciary,” he said.
The President continued, “today, I pay tribute to their Lordships Philip Archer, I.K. Abban, E.K. Wiredu, George Acquah, Georgina Wood, and, the incumbent, Sophia Akuffo, the Chief Justices of the 4th Republic, who have ensured, and are still ensuring that the Judiciary plays its role as the defender of the rights and liberties of the people, and as an independent arbiter, which aims to inspire confidence in the citizenry.”
President Akufo-Addo also remembered with gratitude the contribution of the Council of State, under its various leaders, in helping to steer the ship of state to its current state.
He also commended past and current officials in the public service, and to the active and retired members of the security services who have played their part in helping to preserve the security and the stability of Ghana.
“This survey cannot be complete without mention of the Electoral Commission (EC), National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), political parties, trades unions, civil society organisations, traditional authorities and religious bodies in the success of the 4th Republic,” he added.