Government’s diaspora engagement policy has reached its final draft stage and is expected to be presented to Cabinet early next year to expedite work on its passage into law, the Director of the Diaspora Affairs Office at the Office of the President, Akwasi Awuah Ababio, has said.
The policy is aimed at encouraging more Ghanaians in the diaspora to bring their technical skills, money and other resources back home to support national growth and development.
“[The policy] has been in the pipeline for quite some time,” said Mr. Ababio. “Our consultants have just come up with the final draft. We are yet to have a stakeholder meeting at which they will make the presentation, during which we will have the opportunity to accept their programme and policy to make sure it can subsequently be taken to Cabinet.”
Mr. Ababio said the policy, when finalised and approved, will guide the government’s engagement with the Ghanaian diaspora. “We need to have a codified policy of some sort to refer to as the basis for undertaking strategies and initiatives in relation to the diaspora community.”
He said the government recognises the contributions of diasporans and has charged his office with the responsibility of institutionalising the Ghana Diaspora Celebration and Homecoming Summit as a biennial event.
“We are not just looking forward to merely engaging the diaspora; we are looking forward to extending rights and obligations to the diasporan community to enable them to know what is required of them in the nation-building. I hope that will lead up to the debate of dual citizenship, which is currently ongoing. A private member’s bill has been laid already in Parliament, which we are technically behind. We just don’t give them rights, but equal rights like Ghanaians enjoy.”