Ghana mourns Mandela, flags to fly at half mast until funeral

Accra, Ghana (PANA) - Ghana's Vice President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur has directed that all flags in the country should fly at half mast as a mark of respect and in honour of the former South African President, Nelson Mandela, who passed away on Thursday night.

In a statement issued from his office on Friday, the Vice President, who is acting as president because President John Dramani Mahama is away in Paris attending the summit on Peace and Security in Africa, said the flags would remain at half mast until 15 December when Madiba is laid to rest.

Vice President Amissah-Arthur said the Government and people of Ghana had learnt with great sadness the death of Mr Mandela, who he described as "an epitome of forgiveness and healing".

He said Mr Mandela’s death marked the end of an era; an era of freedom fighters like Dr Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Jomo Kenyetta of Kenya and Julius Nyerere of Tanzania.

The Vice President also said Mr Mandela was "an amazing and remarkable icon in the struggle for the liberation of his people and our continent" who would be remembered for his humility, sacrifice and service to humanity.

"From the start of his fight for the freedom of Blacks in South Africa through his 27 years in prison, to his Presidency of a free democratic non-­racial South Africa, Mr Mandela showed deep commitment to the ideals of justice, fairness and equality. He was an inspiration to the world as he served his nation and continent well," Vice President Amissah-Arthur said.

He expressed his deepest sympathies to the Mandela family, the Government and people of South Africa as well as Mr Mandela’s admirers around the world.

President Mahama in his tribute earlier on Friday said Mandela, 95, he used peace as a vehicle of liberation.

"His utilization of peace as a vehicle of liberation showed Africa that if we were to move beyond the divisiveness caused by colonization, and the pain of our self-inflicted wounds, compassion and forgiveness must play a role in governance. Countries, like people, must acknowledge the trauma they have experienced, and they must find a way to reconcile, to make what was broken whole again," President Mahama said.
-0- PANA MA 6Dec2013

06 december 2013 21:56:09

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