A Flag-Raising Ceremony to mark the 70th Anniversary of the Commonwealth, was held at the forecourt of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration on Monday 11th March 2019. This year’s celebration was held under the theme “A Connected Commonwealth”.
In her address, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Hon. Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, reaffirmed Ghana’s commitment to the fundamental political values of the Commonwealth. She stated that Ghana will continue to support the efforts of the organization in promoting international rules-based order, economic growth and development which are essential instruments for achieving peace and security, prosperity and the overall global agenda on sustainable development.
Hon. Botchwey added that Ghana believes in the fundamental political values of the Commonwealth which includes democracy, freedom, respect for human rights, rule of law and opportunity for all. She recalled the active role played by the country in the realization of the shared values of the Commonwealth and added that Ghana spearheaded the movement to establish an impartial and neutral secretariat for the organisation in 1965.
The Minister indicated that, this year’s theme “A connected Commonwealth” was very timely because member countries must collaborate to protect natural resources and the environment so that all people particularly women, children, youth and the marginalized communities would share the fruit of progress, development and prosperity.
Hon. Botchwey urged that countries of the Commonwealth should strengthen their collaboration and partnerships to better the lives of the people of the member states.
In a speech read on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen and Head of the Commonwealth, Queen Elizabeth II, the Africa Head of the Royal Commonwealth Society, Mr. John Apea, stated that this year’s “Commonwealth Day Celebration had special significance because it marked the 70th anniversary of the London Declaration when nations of the Commonwealth agreed to move forward together as free and equal members”.
“Today many millions of people are drawn together because of the collective values shared by the Commonwealth” he added.
He further stated that, the Queen had said that “in April last year when I welcomed the leaders of 53 nations to at the Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, we all witnessed how the Commonwealth vision offers hope and inspires us to find ways of protecting our planet and our people”.
The Queen urged that all should continue to find new ways of expressing through their actions, the values of belonging to a connected Commonwealth, and look to the future with greater confidence and optimism as a result of the links that are shared and the networks of cooperation and mutual support.