President John Dramani Mahama has underscored the need for Ghanaians to bury the acrimonious past and live together as one people, working for the good of the country.

?Whether NDC or NPP; Kusasi or Mamprusi; Alavanyo or Nkonya; Andani or Abudu, we are one people and must not succumb to divisions,? he said.

The President made the call at a memorial service in Accra put together by Action Chapel International and the South African Embassy in Ghana in memory of former South Africa President, Nelson Mandela, who died on December 5, last year.

Held at the Action Chapel, the service received high patronage from former President Jerry Rawlings, politicians, members of the Diplomatic Corps and Christians from other churches who joined the congregation of the host church to celebrate the life of the late South African leader.

No revenge

President Mahama said the South African situation, where Mr Mandela and the Black population never allowed the evils of apartheid to push them into revenge, was worth emulating by Ghanaians and, indeed, the people of other African countries.

?Apartheid was the most inhuman form of governance the world ever  witnessed, yet Mr Mandela sought reconciliation.

?We should not just eulogise this great African leader but learn from his life,? Mr Mahama said.

The President made reference to the sacrifices the late South African leader made for his nation and said it was important that Africa emulated the example.


Recalling a recent statement by the Council of State that the level of patriotism on the part of Ghanaians had waned, the President indicated that the issue needed to be taken seriously by all in order to correct the wrongs in society.

Mr Mahama rejected claims by some people that apartheid was defeated through dialogue, insisting that it was the arms struggle that forced the apartheid leaders to go to the negotiating table with the Africa National Congress (ANC).

Archbishop Duncan-Williams

At the memorial service punctuated with melodious South African songs and applauses, Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams, the General Overseer of Action Chapel International, said what made President Mandela stood out and also commanded much respect across the world was that he taught the world three things?forgiveness, respect for human dignity and reconciliation.

?These were values he held onto. He lived forgiveness; he demonstrated it. Forgiveness is not a forgotten memory. Forgiveness is memory without revenge; memory without pain,? he said

He observed that although the late South African President had the power to pay back all those who mistreated him and other black South Africans, he chose to reconcile the nation.

South African High Commissioner

The South African High Commissioner to Ghana, Madam Jeanette Ndhlovu, in an emotional tribute, described the life of Mandela as ?well lived?.

Source: Daily Graphic


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