In keeping with his resolve to know and work with the Ghanaian community, Ghana’s newly appointed consul general to New York, H.E. Atta Boafo Kingsley continued his familiarization tour by paying a visit to Ghanaians living in the State of Connecticut, U.S.A.
The informal event, which was organized in the form of a picnic at East Hartford, CT, was put together by the Connecticut Chapter of the NPP, led by its chairman, Mr Daniel Asare. Even though the get together was organized by a branch of Ghana’s incumbent party, it was non-partisan, as Ghanaians from all walks of life living in and around East Hartford showed up in a spirit of camaraderie – members of Ghana’s main opposition political party, the NDC, were present.
After pleasantries were exchanged, H.E. Atta Boafo Kingsley gave his remarks by first extending President Akuffo-Addo’s greetings to those present and the government’s commitment to the development of Ghana. The consul general then highlighted some of the programs he would implement while he serves, including compiling the data of children born to Ghanaian nationals – he believes that their skills and exposure can be of immense help to Ghana.
In addition, the diplomat, who is a former ambassador of Ghana to the Republic of Congo also promised to implement “Service on Wheels,” a program designed to “take consular services to the doorsteps of Ghanaians living in the ‘Tristate’ and beyond.” He believes that the initiative would ease the burden on Ghanaians, who normally have to travel to New York City before been able to access services offered by the consulate.
After his address, attendees were given the opportunity to ask questions - the queries were mostly about the dissatisfaction some Ghanaians have about the Covid-19 testing at Kotoka International Airport, dual citizenship among others.
In response, the consul general sympathized with travellers by acknowledging that travelling for hours in and on itself is an arduous task, which has been exacerbated by the pressures of Covid-19.
He, however, assured the gathering that the government is taken steps to mitigate the inconveniences passengers have to endure during Covid-19 testing at “Kotoka.”
In addition, he advised Ghanaians to exercise patience with the workers, “who also have to bear the brunt of Covid-19” in delivering their duties.
On clarity pertaining to travel by dual citizens, he emphasized that registered beneficiaries in the U.S.A do not require a visa to travel to Ghana – they must however have their dual certificate and U.S. passport handy during their trips. He however stressed that although unregistered dual citizens do not require a visa to travel to Ghana, they must present their Ghana passports at “Kotoka” and U.S. passport at a return entry point in the States.
The former MP for Fomena Constituency in the Ashanti Region of Ghana ended by assuring the gathering of his readiness to listen to their concerns - “his door is always open.” He then expressed his gratitude to the organizers of the event and all attendees.
Later that evening, H.E. Atta Boafo Kingsley personalized his visit to the “Constitution State” by attending the funeral service of a Ghanaian, which was held in Hartford, CT.
Next on the consul general’s familiarization tour is a meet-and-greet session with the Ghanaian community at Orange, NJ, on Sunday, August 22, 2021. Please contact Sarah Sarpong on (973) 787 4786 for more information on this event.
Source: By Kwame Karikari, New York
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