UK’s Minister of Armed Forces visits Ghana as part of regional tour

UK’s Minister of Armed Forces Mr James Heappey

The UK’s Minister of Armed Forces Mr James Heappey arrived in Accra for a three day visit to Ghana. Mr Heappey’s visit forms part of a short tour of the West African region.

Touching down Armed Forces Minister James Heappey said:

“Ghana is a vital security partner and the UK greatly values our relationship. It is also a beacon of stability in West Africa and there is so much which our two countries share – from values like promoting democracy and multilateralism, to tackling threats like terrorism, extremism and organised crime.

“That is why it is crucial that we continue to work together hand-in-hand to tackle these problems and defend our way of life, and the UK looks forward to expanding and deepening our cooperation going forward.”

The long-term stability of the Sahel continues to be a focus for the UK government and to
highlight the UK’s commitment to the UK-Ghana security partnership Minister Heappey will meet His Excellency Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, Honourable Minister for National Security Albert Kan-Dapaah and the Honourable Minister for Defence Dominic Aduna Bingab Nitiwul. They will discuss regional security issues affecting Ghana including piracy, illegal smuggling, and threats to the country’s Northern border.

British High Commissioner to Ghana Iain Walker said:

“Ghana remains one of the UK’s closest security allies in West Africa and despite COVID-19 the country’s focus on peace and security has only strengthened.

“Minister Heappey visit comes as our nations work together to deliver counter-terrorism training and explosive hazard awareness Instructor training. It is examples like this that show the strength and longevity of our security partnership, ensuring that Ghana remains a centre of peace and security across the region.”

During his visit Minister Heappey will also lay a wreath in memory of the fallen at the Veterans Association of Ghana (VAG) Headquarters. He will also meet Commonwealth veterans who have already received the COVAX COVID-19 vaccine and hear their experience of being some of the first in Ghana to receive the vaccine.

Notes to Editors –

· For further information about Minister of Armed Forces James Heappey please visit his profile on the UK government website.

· In 2018 the UK government launched a £12 million programme delivered by the Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League to support more than 7000 pre-independence Commonwealth veterans and their widows. The Veterans Association of Ghana is a partners of the programme.

· The UK is one of the largest humanitarian donors to the Sahel – in 2020 the UK gave £14.65m in humanitarian aid to Mali and is currently in the process of increasing the size of the UK embassy to reinforce our diplomatic strength in the country.

· The UK is are one of the largest bilateral donors to COVAX contributing £548m. COVAX is helping to provide supply of 1bn doses for up to 92 developing countries in 2021 and supporting global equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines. Through COVAX, we are supporting the fair and equitable distribution of entirely free COVID-19 vaccines for up to 500 million people in low and middle-income countries during 2021, covering 20% of their populations.

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