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General News of Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Source: GNA

MPs call for more cooperation with US

Accra, Feb. 20, GNA - Members of Parliament on Wednesday extended a warm welcome to US President George Bush, but said the two countries should see each other as equal partners in development.

Members said the two countries should also use the visit to deepen bilateral relations and explore new areas for co-operation. Members were contributing to a statement by Ms. Christine Churcher, Chairperson of the Foreign Affairs Committee, on the US President's visit to Ghana made on the floor of the House.

"This visit would offer President Bush the opportunity to see at firsthand the significant progress chalked in terms of our bilateral cooperation and overall impact of United States investments in Ghana," Ms Churcher said.

"Mr Speaker, the Kufuor Administration should seize this opportunity to deepen our bilateral and technical cooperation with the US in order to move this country to a middle-income status by 2015," she added. She said the US President's initiatives on HIV/AIDS and malaria were major investments in Africa's health delivery. Mr. Michael Teye Nyaunu, (NDC-Lower Manya) touched on some positive contributions by the US to Ghana's development, but said Ghana had also made significant contributions in helping humanity through her peacekeeping role.

He said the country should not be seen as going around with "a cup in hand".

The member said Ghana's malaria burden should be directly borne by her through a change of environmental attitude to keep mosquitoes away. Mr Isaac Asiamah, (NPP-Atwima-Mponua) said President Bush's visit was a result of Ghana's good governance track records. He said the high profile visit had also enhanced the country's international image.

Mr Joseph Amenowode, (NDC-Hohoe South), while commended Ghana for hosting the visiting US President, said management of the visit had left much to be desired because of the poor management of traffic by the police which saw many people walking distances to reach their destinations.

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