Ghana to resolve boundary demarcation challenges with neighbours – Foreign Minister

Ghana is working to resolve all boundary demarcation challenges with Togo and Burkina Faso by the end of the year, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has assured.

That, she said, was to help foster and enhance existing good relations with the two countries and maintain the principle of good neighbourliness espoused in the country’s foreign policy.

She said this when she delivered a lecture on the country’s foreign policy at the Ghana Armed Forces Command and Staff College as part of the College’s Senior Command and Staff Course 43.

The course had students drawn from the armed forces of 11 African countries comprising; Ghana, Benin, Burkina Faso, Botswana, Côte d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria, Niger, Sierra Leone and Togo.

Foreign Policy was a government’s strategy in dealing with other nations and actors with an international personality.

For years, Ghana has had disagreements with its three neighbours; Burkina Faso, Togo and Cote D’Ivoire, over land and maritime boundaries.

In 2017, Ghana won a maritime boundary dispute with Côte d’Ivoire at a Special Chamber of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).

The Ghana Boundary Commission was leading efforts to resolve other land boundary disputes with Burkina Faso and Togo.

According to Ms Botchwey, the ITLOS ruling resulted in the amicable resolution of the issue without any negative impact on fraternal relations and expressed the hope that the rest would be resolved amicably.

She said good neighbourliness and the promotion of good governance were the focus of the country’s foreign policy in recent years because they were cardinal to the country’s continuous prosperity and peaceful existence.

Based on Article 40 of the 1992 Constitution and the Directive Principles of State Policy, she saidGhana’s Foreign Policy Principles included respect for the sovereign equality of states, Pan-African orientation in global relations and positive neutralism in global affairs.

Others, she said, were respect for public international law and principles of global organisations of which Ghana was a member; non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries with the exception of unconstitutional change of governments across Africa, genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Ms Botchwey said one of the core aspects of Ghana’s Foreign Policy was the promotion of global peace and security while the country was committed to economic diplomacy to attract investments and resources into Ghana.

“As the world becomes more and more interlinked and interdependent and the fortunes of our people are tied to those of people in every corner of the world, our foreign policy can be described as an extension of domestic policy and vice versa.

“This requires versatility, adaptable knowledge and high-quality professionalism as well as greater involvement of citizens in global processes. Ghana is determined to be at the forefront of the new diplomacy required for the changing world we live in”, she said.

BY JONATHAN DONKOR

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