The Western Regional Minister, Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, has extended an official invitation to H. E. Ibas for the 2023 edition of the annual National Coconut Festival, which is scheduled to be held in Takoradi from the 26th to the 28th of September this year.
He also invited Nigerians through the High Commissioner to celebrate Christmas in Takoradi, as the Western Regional Capital hosts the biggest masquerade festival in Ghana during the Christmas season.
Mr Darko-Mensah gave the invitation when he paid a courtesy call to the Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana at the Nigerian House in Accra, Ghana.
During the meeting, Mr Darko-Mensah highlighted the striking similarities between Ghana’s most resourced region, the Western Region, and Nigeria.
He emphasized the importance of formalizing their relationship for mutual benefit.
According to him, it was worth noting that Nigeria is the largest buyer of Ghana’s coconuts, with a significant portion sourced from the Western Region.
He further extended an invitation to Nigerian investors to explore the opportunities in the Western Region as he highlighted the potential for investing in rice cultivation, as Ghana aims to achieve rice sufficiency, taking inspiration from Nigeria’s success in the sector as championed by Hon. Abraham Dwuma Odoom.
For his part, H. E. Ibok-Ete Ibas was delighted at the Minister’s decision to choose Nigeria for such a visit and discussions of key subjects.
He was worried about Africa’s underutilization of its abundant natural resources for prosperity and assured that the details of the meeting would be noted for action in Nigeria.
H. E. Ibas promised the support of his office to promote Takoradi as a destination for Nigerians to explore, especially during the Christmas season when Ghana was already a significant destination for Nigerian tourists.
He encouraged the Minister to intensify marketing efforts to attract more visitors to Takoradi and to work on making it easier for Nigerians to fly directly to Takoradi from Nigeria, without the need for a stopover in Accra.
H. E. Ibas was confident that, shortly, Nigeria could host its edition of the Masquerade Carnival, while Takoradi could host its version of the Calabar Carnival.
Among the Minister’s delegation were the Western Regional Chief Director, Mr Frederick Agyemang; the Regional Director of Agriculture, Mr John Gyimah; and some Metropolitan, Municipal, and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).
Among the delegation was also Mr Charles Cobbina, an advisor to the Minister and the brain behind the Takoradi Christmas City project.