The President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, was awarded the medal of the Republic of Serbia, the highest state order in Serbia, by the President of the Republic of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, at a ceremony on Monday, October 11, 2021, at the headquarters of the Serbian Presidency in Belgrade.
President Akufo-Addo received the award “for exceptional service in developing and strengthening cooperation and friendly relations between the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Ghana”.
The medal was awarded by decree of the President of Serbia on the sidelines of the ceremony to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).
Prior to this, the President made a statement at the plenary session of the conference noting that since the days of Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkrumah, one of the five (5) historic founding fathers of NAM, Ghana has been a loyal follower of its principles, i.e. Respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of states, non-interference in the internal affairs of states and non-aggression against states.
“We believe that the strength of this movement is determined not only by its number, but above all by its attachment to the principles that established it,” said the president.
President Akufo-Addo recalled the words of the first head of state of Ghana, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, at the 1961 conference in Belgrade, who deplored the reluctance of the world’s superpowers to disarm, and declared: “60 years later the great powers have not disarmed. The danger of nuclear war has not disappeared either. They are still as powerful as they were then, and this has been made clear by the COVID pandemic and unsavory politics of vaccine nationalism we are currently witnessing.
He deplored the fact that NAM member states have become a global power game and are subject to the benevolence of powerful countries who are spending their hoarded supplies at their own pace, not necessarily in line with reality.
“The need for independence in the global south is just as important today as positive neutralism was during the Cold War. The effects of the pandemic on our population are serious. We must stand shoulder to shoulder and be determined to make sure we are better prepared for future pandemics, ”said President Akufo-Addo.
He continued: “We must not miss the opportunity to make far-reaching decisions for a more just and balanced world based on the principle of the equality of sovereign states. We should continue to work towards the global goals of peace, development and interdependence. “
The President reiterated Ghana’s belief that the non-aligned movement is as important in the 21st century as it is in the 20th century in protecting the interests of developing countries.
“There will be challenges, but hand in hand we can move forward together, and much further, if, through our cooperation and solidarity, we can transform the global financial system to facilitate the rapid development of our economies. The next sixty (60) years of our movement must mark their ability to live up to the desires and aspirations of our peoples for development, dignity and diversity, ”he added.