President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has conferred the Grand Medal of Ghana on the outgoing Ambassador of the United State (US), Stephanie Sullivan, for her successful tour of duty in Ghana.
The state honour, one of the country’s prestigious national honours, was presented to the US ambassador at a ceremony at the Jubilee House in Accra yesterday.
Present at the ceremony were the Chief of Staff, Akosua Frema Osei Opare, top government officials, and members of the diplomatic corps in Ghana.
Ms Sullivan is the second US Ambassador and the fourth foreign diplomat accredited to Ghana to be given such an award.
She served from 2018 to 2022 and was awarded for her contribution to deepening the already cordial relations between Ghana and the US.
President Akufo-Addo said the relations between Ghana and the US during her period was enhanced in the areas of trade, health, agriculture, and security.
“We have witnessed significant expansion and consolidation of ties between our two periods,” he said and credited Ms Sullivan for her role in that regard.
The foundation of the relations between Ghana and the US, according to President Akufo-Addo, was the mutual commitment of both countries to democratic values and institutions.
He said Ghana had been inspired by the tenets of the “Jeffersonian democracy” of the United States that had kept the country together under the Fourth Republic.
The President celebrated the outgoing ambassador for her passionate adherence to human rights, including the rights of women and children.
He said Ms Sullivan relentlessly helped improve Ghana’s governance systems, especially the quality of its electoral systems.
President Akufo-Addo indicated that the outgoing ambassador helped Ghana to undertake the most transparent election in the Fourth Republic in 2020 which “enabled us to cement our reputation as the beacon of democracy.”
He thanked the ambassador for supporting Ghana to access COVID-19 vaccines from the US government and expressed the country’s gratitude to her.
Ms Sullivan, on her part, acknowledged her staff at the US Embassy for making her duty tour of the country a success.
She thanked the President and the Ghanaian government for giving her such a recognition and added that her successor would continue to “water the seedlings we planted in my time as well as plant new crops.”
She was grateful that her work in the country made a difference in the lives of many Ghanaians in public health, literacy, clean water, agri-business, peace and security as well as providing electricity to millions of Ghanaians.
BY YAW KYEI