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Former President His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor has admitted that Africa is “grossly” handicapped.

In a tweet he made on Monday, April 4, the former President observed that for the continent to leapfrog to development, its leaders must be taught and prepared in other spheres of life and not only in politics.

“We are grossly handicapped.
If we must leapfrog to development,
our leaders must be taught and
prepared in not only politics,
but other spheres of life”.

His tweet had pictures of past and current African leaders.

Ghana’s President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his defence minister, Dominic Nitiwul, were captured in a shot while former Foreign Minister Hanna Tetteh, as well as former West African leaders Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leon, were also captured.

H.E. John Kofi Agyekum Kufuor GCB (born 8 December 1938) is a Ghanaian politician who served as the President of Ghana from 7 January 2001 to 7 January 2009.

He was also Chairperson of the African Union from 2007 to 2008.

At the international level, Kufuor consolidated Ghana’s position as the voice of Africa, a credible peace broker, and a beacon of democracy (Ghana was the first country to undergo Peer Review under NEPAD’s Africa Peer Review Mechanism), and a responsible member of the comity of nations.

In July 2009, Kufuor became a member of the SNV Netherlands Development Organization International Advisory Board to contribute his expertise to the organization’s poverty reduction work. In September 2009, Kufuor spoke in the Netherlands at a Dutch government event to mark ’60 years of development aid’ at the invitation of Dutch Minister Bert Koenders, which was attended by nearly 2,000 people. During his visit to the Netherlands, he was interviewed by the newspaper NRC Handelsblad and the Internationale Samenwerking magazine. He argued for the importance of effective development assistance, pointing out that development aid helped Ghana enter the international capital market.

On 21 September 2009, he delivered the prestigious Legatum Pericles Lecture at the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kufuor is the Governing Council Chairman of Interpeace, an international peacebuilding organisation based in Geneva since October 2009. Also in 2009, he served on the High-Level Commission on the Modernization of World Bank Group Governance, which – under the leadership of Ernesto Zedillo – conducted an external review of the World Bank Group’s governance.

Kufuor was chosen together with Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to jointly receive the 2011 World Food Prize for their personal commitment and visionary leadership while serving as the presidents of Ghana and of Brazil, respectively, in creating and implementing government policies to alleviate hunger and poverty in their countries. The foundation said the significant achievements of these two Laureates illustrate that transformational leadership truly can effect positive change and greatly improve people’s lives.

On 20 September 2011, Kufuor inaugurated the John Agyekum Kufuor (JAK) Foundation with a ground-breaking ceremony for the JAK Centre for Leadership, Governance and Development at the University of Ghana, Legon. The inaugural lecture, which attracted very high local and foreign dignitaries, had H.E. Horst Köhler, former president of Germany, as its guest speaker. Thabo Mbeki, former president of South Africa, and Ghana ex-president Jerry John Rawlings, Kufuor’s fiercest critic, were among the dignitaries who attended the ceremony. The ex-presidents also unveiled a plaque on 22 September 2011 for the Kufuor Presidential Library and Museum at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, which formed part of the John A. Kufuor Foundation. In September 2018 the foundation set up the Kufuor Young Entrepreneurs Network (K-YEN). This initiative supports and develops young entrepreneurs to excel in their endeavors.

In October 2011, Kufuor received the 2011 World Food Prize, along with President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva for his personal commitment and visionary leadership while serving as the president of Ghana, and in creating and implementing government policies to alleviate hunger and poverty in his country.

Since November 2011, Kufuor has been the first high-level chair of the Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) partnership.

Numerous NPP supporters tried to barricade President Kufuor’s house on 7 January 2013 to prevent him from attending John Dramani Mahama’s inauguration, which the NPP as a party had decided to boycott as they felt going would undermine their challenge to Mahama’s win in court. Kufuor explained that the party had allowed him to go because he was invited as an ex-President of Ghana and not as a Member of the NPP to the chagrin of the supporters. The Ghana Police Service (GPS) reinforcement had to be sent to his abode to allow him to be able to go for the programme.

In September 2017, the George Grant University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) appointed Kufour as the first Chancellor of the university, the appointment taking effect from 1 November 2017. The Investiture of was held in January 2018.

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