By: Fred Yaw Sarpong
Ghana and Botswana have agreed to strengthen and expand trade relations and also establish joint venture companies between the two countries.
The two countries have also agreed to contribute to the establishment of strong democratic institutions in other African countries.
This was revealed by President John Mahama in response to a toast proposed by President Ian Khama of Botswana , at a State Luncheon in honour of the former . The ECOWAS Chair is on a 3-day State Visit to Botswana.
The two leaders held discussions following which a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Political Consultation was signed by the two countries.
‘‘We will continue to rely on brotherly nations like Botswana to help share our experience of stable democracy, strong institutions, respect for human rights and the enormous benefits of changing governments only through the ballot box with other countries. Ghana and Botswana have shared values and these strengthen the bonds between us,’’ President Mahama said.
President Mahama's visit is a follow-up to the August 2011 visit to Ghana by President Khama. As part of his activities, President Mahama will officially inaugurate the Dikgatlhong Dam, visit the Botswana Meat Company and tour the Diamond Trading Company Botswana.
The Dikgatlhong Dam is the largest in Botswana with a water holding capacity of 400 million cubic metres and is expected to help solve the challenging water supply situation in the Southern African country.
President Mahama will also visit a youth empowerment project in Gaborone and share with the host authorities Ghana's experiences with youth development and empowerment. He will also host a meeting of Ghanaian citizens in Botswana who include largely, professionals such as medical doctors, engineers, lawyers and accountants. There are many others with established businesses in the SME sector of Botswana.
Accompanying the President and his wife are the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Hanna S. Tetteh (MP), Minister for Education Professor Naana Jane Opoku Agyeman and the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Nii Osah Mills.