Four peacekeepers from Ghana will be honoured posthumously at the United Nations Peacekeepers Day ceremony.
A statement from the UN said that the Secretary-General, António Guterres, will lay a wreath to honour about 4,200 peacekeepers who have lost their lives since 1948.
Mr. Guterres will also preside over a ceremony at which the Dag Hammarskjöld Medal will be awarded posthumously to 117 military, police, and civilian peacekeepers, who lost their life serving under the UN flag last year.
“Among the peacekeepers to be honoured posthumously are four from Ghana: SGT Mansfield Sekyere who served with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL); Messrs. Francis Assuah Kwajan and Alphonsus Bieturu who served in civilian capacities with the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA); and Mr. Victor Akwasi Osei-Akyempong who served in a civilian capacity in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO)”, the UN statement read.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, in collaboration with the UN in Ghana and the National Security Agencies, is also expected to lead the national commemorative ceremony in Accra in honour of Ghanaian peacekeepers, both active and retired.
“Wreaths will be laid in memory of those who have lost their lives serving for peace. The ceremony will take place at the forecourt of the Ministry.”
Ghana is the 9th largest contributor of personnel to UN Peacekeeping, deploying nearly 2,600 military and police personnel to peace operations in Lebanon, Mali, the Middle East, among others.
During a special ceremony, the Secretary-General will award the “Captain Mbaye Diagne Medal for Exceptional Courage” posthumously to Captain Abdelrazakh Hamit Bahar of Chad, also award the ‘2021 Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award’ to Major Winnet Zharare, a Zimbabwean military observer, who served with the UN Mission in South Sudan.
In his message, the Secretary-General said: “…we are reminded an age-old truth: peace can never be taken for granted. Peace is the prize. We are deeply grateful to the 87,000 civilian, police and military personnel now serving under the UN flag who are helping to realize the prize of peace worldwide.”
The theme for this year’s observance is “People. Peace. Progress. The Power of Partnerships.”