President John Dramani Mahama has said he is committed to ensure that the country achieves the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to improve the lives of the people.
He said government would be working with civil society organisations and other stakeholders to make the dream a reality.
Launching the SGDs for Ghana to close the three-day seventh Africa Conference on Sexual and Health Rights (ACSHR) in Accra, the President called on stakeholders to ensure the success of the programme.
The ACSHR was put together by the Organisation of African First Ladies (OAFLA) in collaboration with Curious Minds-Ghana, an organisation of young advocates and youth in broadcasting.
The event was on the theme: “Realising Demographic Dividend in Africa: the Critical Importance of Adolescents and Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights”.
It was attended by First Ladies from Kenya, Ethiopia, Mali and Cote D’Ivoire., Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso and Chad with others First Ladies expected from Sudan, Madagascar and Mozambique.
Also in attendance were the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders in Africa, the President of the International Women’s Health Coalition and over 15 Ministers from the Health, Justice, Gender and Youth Ministries across Africa.
Over 500 participants, comprising various stakeholder and constituency groups across the African continent are attending the conference and these include policy makers, development partners, civil society organisations, academia, social activists, media and the youth.
To ensure the implementation of the SDGs in Ghana, President has constituted a high level committee under his supervision to ensure the implementation of the 17 goals.
The United Nations on September 25, 2015, adopted a set of goals to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all as part of new SDGs.
Each of the 17 goals has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years through the collaboration of governments, the private sector and individuals.
President Mahama, in January this year, was also appointed by the UN Secretary General, Mr Ban Ki-Moon to co-chair with Ms Erna Solberg, the Norwegian Prime Minister, an aspect of the SDG advocacy.
The two have been tasked to promote the universal SDGs, raise awareness of the integrated nature of the SDGs and foster the engagement of stakeholders for their implementation.
Dr Nii Moi Thompson, Director General of the National Development Planning Commission, said the SDGs were being incorporated into the national development framework for implementation and they would help transform Ghana’s economy.
He said the Commission was making the effort to align five out of the 17 goals of the SDGs into Ghana’s long-term development plan.
Ms Christine Evans-Klock, the UN Resident Coordinator, commended President Mahama for the exemplary role he has played in ensuring the success of the SDGs and described his appointment as a reflection of Ghana’s leading role in Africa towards achieving the SDGs.
She said the UN was working with NDPC and other organisations to develop an action plan consistent with the objectives of the SDGs.
Mr Alban S.K. Bagbin, the Majority Leader in Parliament, and Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Minority Leader also pledged the support of Parliament to ensure the successful implementation of the SDGs.
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