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This year, the National Population celebrated the 2022 World Population Day with an event at the GNAT Hall in Accra under the theme: “Prioritizing Rights and Choices, Harnessing Opportunities, the Road to a Resilient Future for All”. They were supported by the Ministry of Health, UNFPA Ghana, the Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana (PPAG), the Regional Institute of Population Studies (RIPS)-University of Ghana and GOIL Energy Limited.

Executive Director of the National Population Council, Dr. Leticia Adelaide Appiah delivering a welcome address to participants.

Addressing participants at the celebration, the Executive Director of the National Population Council (NPC), Dr. Leticia Adelaide Appiah stated: ‘Teenagers are acting on and not talking about pregnancy. So we do not need to just talk, but also take action now! We need to act to make sure the teenagers find us worthy of being their parents.’ She emphasized the need to reduce and eliminate teenage pregnancy and child marriage, since they negatively impact the Ghanaian society and derail development efforts.

In his remarks, the Country Representative a.i. of UNFPA Ghana, Mr. Barnabas Yisa, disclosed that sustainable development will only be possible in Ghana if people were allowed to exercise their rights to make informed choices. He congratulated the Government of Ghana for including family planning under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). ‘Family Planning is a way of ensuring the survival of mother and child’, he added. He noted that, ‘Figures from the first digital census last year showed that the Ghanaian population is about 31 million people. The real resource of Ghana is these 31 million people!’, he echoed.

The guest speaker for the occasion, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye, CEO of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), thanked the NPC for their work on family planning. He highlighted the fact that through Family Planning, the child mortality rate in Ghana has been drastically reduced. Dr. Okoe Boye reiterated the need to view these choices as a matter of human rights, adding that the negative cultural and religious perceptions about contraceptives could be eliminated through increased information and trust.

CEO of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Dr. Okoe Boye delivering his keynote address during the celebration.

Participants at the session took time to make contributions and ask questions which were answered by Prof. Stephen Kwankye, Director of RIPS and the Executive Director of NPC. The Chairperson of the occasion, Mrs. Charlotte Morgan Asiedu, Director, Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (PPME) at the Office of the President commended the various stakeholders for their contribution to the success of the celebration.

She equally stressed the importance of prioritizing family planning to ensure societal ills including: teenage pregnancy, ‘streetism’ and mobocracy.