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Regional News of Friday, 20 August 2021

Source: GNA

V/R: Media practitioners advocate deeper relations with Togo

Colonel Awoki Panassa, the Togolese Ambassador to Ghana addresses media practitioners Colonel Awoki Panassa, the Togolese Ambassador to Ghana addresses media practitioners

Media practitioners in the Volta Region are calling on stakeholders to address factors hindering correlation and coexistence with neighbouring Togo.

At a press engagement with Colonel Awoki Panassa, the Togolese Ambassador to Ghana on Tuesday, some journalists were of the view that language continued to block socialization and integration despite common ancestry, and called for initiatives that would enhance communication between the two nations.

They also complained about difficulties in crossing the border, which included what was said to be excessive use of force by Togolese border security.

The border closure was tabled at the meeting, and the effects on cross-trade activity and livelihoods were pointed out.

Col. Panassa responded that complaints over border crossing difficulties had been registered and would work with the relevant stakeholders to have them addressed.

He said the border closure had been caught in the coronavirus pandemic, and therefore adherence to the requirements of protocols including inoculation remained the way out.

“The decision of closing borders was taken by all countries for the common good of Africa during the onset of the coronavirus and so I cannot tell when the border is to be opened.

“The process is ongoing, and the authorities are handling the problem to fix the pandemic so things could go back to normal. We are all involved in the mission of ending the pandemic,” Col. Panasa said, appealing to all to get vaccinated.

The Ambassador promised to engage authorities on increasing learning exchange programs between the two nations in pursuance of shared economic dreams under the Africa Continental Free Trade Area agreement.

He bemoaned the diversion of trade into countries outside the African continent and said Africa’s political leaders deserved commendation for establishing the free trade area.

Col. Panassa also praised the AGI and other stakeholders in interregional trade promotion, and called for the formulation of policies and programs “that will work well for us.”

“We will work together. We will share friendship and work with the various partners to achieve our objectives,” he said.

Mr. Dela Gadzanku, Chair of the AGI in the Eastern, Volta, and Oti Regions, said the media in the Volta Region held its place in industrial development and urged practitioners to consider indigenous industries for support.

He said the AGI is working with the Volta Regional Coordinating Council (VRCC), to grow the private sector in the Region and position it to catch the waves of the continental free trade agreement.

Mr. Gadzanku said the Region was booming with young people excelling in industry, and that the AGI would continue to expose them to international partnerships and opportunities.

The Chairman further promised more collaborative economic initiatives with Togo, saying “we must promote inter-regional trade, and the best place to start is with Togo our own neighbours.

“There are lots of opportunities between us and we need to work closely with Togo and seek a lasting relationship,” he added.

The Togolese envoy had been viewing major industries in the Volta Region and met with the Regional Minister and some key industry players.

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