President John Dramani Mahama has declared Ghana’s readiness to sign up to the Alliance of Solar-Rich Nations, which is being spearheaded by India.
Addressing the 3rd India-Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi, India, he said Ghana was in full support of the initiative and would be one of the first nations to join it.
President Mahama described as shameful, the failure of many African countries to take advantage of the abundant sunshine to produce solar energy to address their energy challenges.
“It is unacceptable and indeed a shame that many of the countries with the highest utilisation of solar power are located in temperate climates that have a relatively much lower level of insolation than India and Africa,” he said.
He said Ghana took the alliance seriously because of the inherent benefits. The Indian Prime Minister, Mr Nerandra Modi, said in New Delhi that he would launch plans to set up the alliance at the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Summit in Paris this month.
India’s intention is to spearhead a solar revolution among sun-rich nations, with an objective “To make solar energy an integral part of our life and extend it to the most unconnected villages and communities.”
Sustainable development goals
President Mahama expressed the hope that the Sustainable Development Goals ( SDGs) adopted by the African Union and the Paris COP 21 summit would enable the continent to build on the successes achieved under the Millennium Development Goals.
He also was of the hope that working together with India over the next five years would enhance the realisation of the SDG targets.
Taking a look through history, President Mahama drew attention to the huge role great leaders such as Jawaharlal Nehru, Sukarno and Kwame Nkrumah played in the establishment of the Non-Aligned Movement as well as other partnerships that hinged on South-South Cooperation
“The solidarity among the countries of the developing world at the time allowed our nations to speak with one voice against oppression and injustice of our world,” he stressed.
Having come thus far, the President said, the need for South-South cooperation appeared even more important now.
He expressed the hope that the Delhi Summit would further strengthen the commitment of Africa and India to work at creating a truly peaceful and secured world
“The strategic partnership between India and Africa must, therefore, be seen as part of our shared heritage of struggling against foreign domination and an unshakeable determination to uphold the dignity of our people, “he added.
President Mahama then touched on the new India development package for Africa, which was announced by the Indian Prime Minister, Mr Nerandra Modi, and described it as welcome news.
“Over the next five years, this allows Africa and India to expand the scope of our cooperation and partnership, “President Mahama said.
Mr Modi said in New Delhi that he would launch plans to set up the alliance at the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Summit in Paris this month.
“I invite you to join an alliance of solar-rich countries that I have proposed to launch in Paris on November 30 at the time of COP-21 (Conference of Parties 21) meeting. Our goal is to make solar energy an integral part of our life and take it to the most unconnected villages and communities,” he said.
Alliance of Solar-Rich Nations
The Alliance of Solar-Rich Nations seeks to strike alliance between India and hundreds of other sun-rich nations around the world.
Mr Modi has been a strong advocate of the development of renewable energy to address energy challenges that confront many countries, including India, and he sees solar energy as one sure way of tackling the problem.
“When the sun sets, tens of millions of homes in India and Africa become dark,” Modi said at the India-Africa summit. “We want to light up lives of our people and power their future. But we want to do it in a way that the snow on Kilimanjaro does not disappear, the glacier that feeds the River Ganges does not retreat, and our islands are not doomed,” he told the summit.