First Lady, 2 Others Honoured

President Akufo-Addo giving a peck to Rebecca Akufo-Addo after receiving her citation at the ceremony


The University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) yesterday honoured First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo and two others for their sterling contribution to national development.

The rest included former Speaker of Parliament, Justice Joyce Bamford Addo and former Chief Justice, Georgina Theodora Wood, who were the first females to occupy their respective positions.

The school thus conferred honorary doctorate degrees on the three distinguished female Ghanaian stateswomen for what the university said was their exceptional contribution to the development of the country in their chosen endeavours.

In her acceptance speech, the First Lady, on her own behalf and on behalf of the other recipients, expressed appreciation to the university for the honour done them.

She said it was her dream and hope that in the not-so-distant future, Ghana will have a female President, especially after the country has had a first female Speaker of Parliament and a first female Chief Justice, the third and fourth most powerful positions in the country respectively.

“I have always known that all people want is a decent life. So, the desire to ensure women and children have a decent life has been my sole motivation. Rewards, Recognition, and may I add Honorary Doctorate Degrees, were never in my contemplation at any stage on my philanthropic journey,” she noted.

That, she said, was because “I simply wanted to make a difference in the lives of those who needed assistance.”

She, therefore, dedicated the award to “the women and children of Ghana whose resilience and drive continue to inspire me. It is an honour to receive it on their behalf.”

But, like Martin Luther King, Mrs. Akufo-Addo said, “I also have a dream. I dream that one day there will be a woman President in Ghana, and the title Madam President will be said as easily as Mr President. We hope this honour, and our humble contribution to our nation will inspire girls to aspire to the very top.”

“With humility and gratitude, I thank the Chancellor, Dr. Kofi Konadu Sarpong, Chairman and Members of the University Council, the Vice-Chancellor, Management, and Members of Convocation of the University of Professional Studies, for our Honorary Doctorate Degrees. Your belief in our work is a testament to the shared commitment we hold, to create a better world,” Mrs. Akufo-Addo added.

Paying her respect to the two other Ghanaian stateswomen who were honoured together with her, the First Lady said she was honoured to find herself in the company of two women who have made significant contributions and impact in two out of the three arms of government (the legislature and the judiciary).

“I find myself in the company of two illustrious daughters of the land. I do not take it for granted. It is an honour to be in the company of these eminent women, who have made immense contributions to two arms of government – the Legislature and the Judiciary. These are women I both respect and honour,” Mrs. Akufo-Addo remarked.

“It is on record that these two remarkable women, Right Honourable Justice Bamford–Addo and Her Ladyship Theodora Wood, have attained the positions of number three and four in this country, and have broken the glass ceiling for the women of Ghana,” she further remarked.

In attendance was President Akufo-Addo, Chief Justice Gertrude Araba Sackey Torkornoo, Chief of Staff at the Office of the President, Mrs. Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, Minister for Education, Yaw Adutwum, Minister for National Security, Albert Kan Dapaah, and National Security Coordinator, Edward Asomani.

By Charles Takyi Boadu, Presidential Correspondent