Accra – Dr. Francis Deng, Special Adviser to the UN Secretary General on the Prevention of Genocide today, 23 March paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni at his office.
Dr. Deng was accompanied by the Acting UN Resident Coordinator, Mrs. Elizabeth Moundo. Dr. Deng who is currently visiting the West Africa Sub region has already visited the Republic of Guinea. Welcoming the Special Adviser, the Minister congratulated him on his appointment as a Special Adviser on the “touchy” issue of genocide. He mentioned that the world was full of rampant commission of crimes against humanity, war crimes including genocide. With that in mind, Ghana will support his mission and help take all the necessary measures to prevent genocide. Alhaji Mumuni reiterated Ghana’s commitment to peace and security in the West Africa sub-region and pledged to support conflict prevention mechanism, as outlined by the Special Adviser.
Dr. Deng thanked the minister for the assurance and support for his mission. He mentioned that genocide is a horrific crime and after travelling to a number of countries associated with genocide he had come to the conclusion to demystify the notion surrounding the crime.
Touching on some measures in the prevention of genocide, Dr. Deng mentioned the elements of governance, equality and promotion of the values of democracy. He pointed out that protection of any country’s citizens is the responsibility of the state and if the state does not have the facilities for protection then it has to call on the International community for help.
He described genocide as an extreme form of identity related conflict and could be prevented through constructive management of identity and diversity.
The Special Adviser recalled the memories of Ghana during the Congo Crisis and commended Ghana for its commitment to peacekeeping. He stressed that his visit to Ghana was to seek Government support for his mandate. He recalled the former UN Secretary-General, Mr. Kofi Annan, an illustrious son of Ghana who once said that “we should not allow what happened in Rwanda to happen again”.
Dr. Deng explained that his mission in West Africa is to work with governments in a constructive way to prevent genocide.
At the end of the visit Dr. Francis Deng granted interviews to some journalists.
Dr. Deng is to meet the UN Country Team tomorrow, Thursday, 25 March 2010. UNIC-Accra has been involved in all the necessary arrangements to make the Special Adviser’s visit a success.