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Former President John Dramani Mahama has been given the 2024 African Advancement Award for exemplary leadership at the second edition of the Afro-Heritage Awards held in Lagos, Nigeria, Saturday, April 13, 2024.

John Mahama beats three other African leaders to win the award, the second of its kind, after Botswana’s former President, Lt. Gen. Dr Seretse Khama lan Khama, secured the maiden edition in 2023 in Kigali, the Rwandan capital.

The idea for the “prestigious and significant award to honour people of African heritage who have distinguished themselves through remarkable achievements across the globe has become imperative to foster the African culture of excellence and promote Afrocentrism,” noted the organisers.

According to them, the 2024 flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress has became a beacon of exemplary leadership after successfully handing over power to the opposition when he lost the 2016 presidential election.

In the spirit of upholding the dividends of democracy in Africa, the organisers indicated that Mr. Mahama deserved the honour for “being a shining example with a proven track record of his passion for advancement of democracy, peace, security, and development in Ghana, and Africa.”

They added that “tenacious spirit that has driven Ghana with impacts that are still being felt today.”

On his part, the former President expressed gratitude to his team for helping him navigate through the challenges he encountered during his presidency, indicating that he is inspired by the honour, especially for getting the opportunity to contest for the second time, the highest office of the land.

“I dedicate this award to the team that helped me, day and night thinking through the challenges that we had as a country. And we went through some difficult times. We had a power crisis, we had an economic crisis and one had to really be innovative and creative thinking to be able to steer through those times.

“I’m inspired by this award because not everybody gets the chance the opportunity to be president twice. Incidentally I’m standing for elections again and it’s God who gives that opportunity,” he stated.

John Mahama averred further that “reflecting over these last eight years on things that you did well and things that you didn’t do so well” offers him “an opportunity to come and make those things better” adding that the award from the Heritage Times is such an “inspiration.”

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