President Mahama: I Never Imagined That One Day I’ll Address Our Nation In Such CircumstancesAfrica, Business
This was after he had undertaken both the Oath of Allegiance and the Presidential Oath.
President Mahama, until Tuesday, July 24, was Vice President for the late President Mills.
He takes over the remaining term of Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, who passed away at 14.15 GMT at the 37 Military Hospital after suffering a short illness.
The Speaker of Parliament Joyce Bamford-Addo recalled the House for an emergency sitting after an earlier meeting in the day, where a letter was read by the speaker informing MP’s of the President’s decision to travel to Nigeria on Tuesday night on an official visit.
The Oath of Allegiance stated: In the name of the Almighty God swear, solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Republic of Ghana as by law established; that I will uphold the sovereignty and integrity of Ghana; and that I will preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Republic of Ghana. So help me God”.
THE PRESIDENTIAL OATH states:
“Having been elected to the high office of President of the Republic of Ghana do in the name of the Almighty God swear, solemnly affirm that I will be faithful and true to the Republic of Ghana.
“That I will at all times preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Republic of Ghana; and that I dedicate myself to the service and well-being of the people of the Republic of Ghana and to do right to all manner of persons.
“I further solemnly swear, solemnly affirm that should I at any time break this Oath of office, I shall submit myself to the laws of the Republic of Ghana and suffer the penalty for it. So help me God.”
President Mahama later read his aceptance speech in which he paid tribute to Prof John Evans Atta Mills and committed himself to the task ahead.
President Mahama said: “It’s with deep sorrow that I address the nation. Our nation has been hit by unprecedented tragedy. We have lost a sitting president who worked so tirelessly for his people. He was taken ill around noon today and rushed to 37 Military Hospital. He passed away at 14.15 hrs this afternoon.
“This is the saddest day in our nation’s history. I never imagined that one day I’ll address our nation in such circumstances. I’m personally devastated. I have lost a father and mentor. I extend our deepest condolences to the family. Our hearts are with our mother Ernestina Naadu Mills. He had deep respect for the office and people he served. He dedicated his entire life to our dear nation.
“He brought a distinctive insight in Ghana politics. He was humble and a good example and inspiration to all of us. Our finest tribute is to maintain the unity and stability of this country.
“Flags should fly at half mast in the next one week.”
In her tribute, US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said “On behalf of the people of the United States, I want to send my deepest sympathies to the people of Ghana and the friends, family, and loved ones of President John Evans Atta Mills.
“President Mills made a significant contribution to Ghana’s democracy and development, and forged a strong and positive partnership with the United States. As the third president of modern Ghana, he worked to strengthen his country’s democratic institutions and to expand prosperity for all of its people. He promoted regional peace and reinforced Ghana’s reputation as a leader in Africa. President Mills was a champion for his nation and his loss will be felt around the world. My thoughts and prayers are with all the people of Ghana during this difficult time.”