×

Ghana Foreign Minister Bids To Be Next Commonwealth Chief

  Ghana’s minister for foreign affairs Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has launched a bid to be the next Commonwealth secretary-general, saying she wants to see a … Continue reading Ghana Foreign Minister Bids To Be Next Commonwealth Chief


A file photo of Commonwealth meeting. X/@Commonwealthsec

 

Ghana’s minister for foreign affairs Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has launched a bid to be the next Commonwealth secretary-general, saying she wants to see a free-trade agreement among the 56 member nations.

“A successful free trade agreement among Commonwealth member states would allow these states to reap the benefits of enhanced integration and participation in global and regional supply chains and boost their participation in the multilateral trading system,” Botchwey said on Friday in Accra after announcing her candidacy for the top role.

The voluntary association of sovereign states comprises the United Kingdom and a number of former colonies. It promotes democratic governance, cooperation in trade, education, climate advocacy and the transparency of financial systems. Headed by King Charles III, the secretary-general is responsible for running the London-based secretariat.

READ ALSO: Bomb Explodes Near Greek Labour Ministry, No Casualties

By convention, the secretary-general role is rotated around the body’s four geographical blocs: the Pacific, Asia, Europe and Africa. It is now Africa’s turn.

Ghana’s foreign ministry said Botchwey has the backing of the continent’s African Union bloc, and “enjoys considerable support across all regions of the Commonwealth”.

So far, no other contender has emerged for the top role ahead of the scheduled October 22 election.

A Commonwealth Secretary-General can serve a maximum of two terms of four years each. The incumbent is Dominican Baroness Patricia Scotland whose tenure ends in October.

Nominating the Ghanaian for the job, President Nana Akufo-Addo said he has “strong confidence in Foreign Minister Botchwey to lead our aspiration for renewal and for building future-looking resilient and thriving economies, through community cooperation and action.”

A former lawmaker, she has served as foreign minister for the past seven years, notably steering  Ghana’s two-year tenure on the UN Security Council, ending December 2023.