Home News Ghana’s oldest career diploma, Mr Richard Maximilian Akwei turns 100

Ghana’s oldest career diploma, Mr Richard Maximilian Akwei turns 100

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Politics Ministry Ambassador
Politics Ministry Ambassador

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, has celebrated the hundredth birthday of Mr Richard Maximilian Akwei, Ghana’s oldest career diploma.

He is the sole survivor of the Group of 10 Pioneer Ghanaian Foreign Service Officers.

Mr Ramses Joseph Cleland, the Chief Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, led a delegation from the Ministry to pay a courtesy call on Mr Akwei at his residence in Accra.

The Chief Director on behalf of Madam Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, presented Mr Akwei with a bouquet of flowers and wished him well and further praised him for his invaluable contributions to the Foreign Ministry Service of Ghana.

Other members of the Delegation included Mr Sidney Ellis, Director for Administration, and Madam Nana Tenewa Asamoah, Director of information and Public Affairs.

Mr Akwei was born on 27th November 1923 to Mr Richard Mabuo Akwei and Mrs Martha Akwei in Accra.

He attended the Prince of Wales (Achimota) College, Accra in 1939, receiving a Cambridge School Certificate from the London University with Matriculation in 1942.

Mr Akwei joined the Foreign Service Corps in 1956 and was posted to the United Kingdom High Commission in Ottawa, Canada, as a Cadet Diplomat.

Upon Ghana’s attainment of independence on 6th March 1957, Mr Akwei was appointed Counsellor and Head of Chancery for the Ghana Embassy in Washington DC, playing a leading role in the liberation movement of Africa.

From 1961, Mr Akwei was engaged in the projection of Ghana’s foreign policy globally, under the country’s first president Dr Kwame Nkrumah. 

He served as Ghana’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) in Geneva, and Ambassador to Switzerland 1965-1967 and Permanent Representative to the UN, New York 1967-1972.

In addition, Mr Akwei served as Ghana’s Ambassador to the Peoples Republic of China 1972-1976.

He was a Senior Principal Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 1976-1978.

Mr Cleland on behalf of the staff of the Ministry conveyed their hearty congratulations to Mr Akwei.

“This enviable milestone underscores the grace of God upon your life and the many years of distinguished service to our dear country,” Mr Cleland said.

“Your contribution to Ghana’s Foreign Policy during your time of active service is evident in the positive image Ghana enjoys on the international stage.”

Mr Cleland said as the sole survivor of the Group of 10 pioneer Ghanaian Foreign Service Officers, Mr Akwei’s years of distinguished service to the country’s foreign policy continue to be a lamp unto the feet of many officers who seek to make an impact in their chosen career.

“On this occasion, we join your family and friends in wishing you a wonderful celebration. Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of our highest consideration.”

On his part, a visibly elated Mr Akwei expressed gratitude to Madam Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, for the honour done to him.

He wished the Minister the best in her career; saying “I hear there is a bright future looming for the Minister”.

To the Chief Director, Mr Akwei said: “Well, Mr Joe Cleland, your father, he was my colleague and my friend, when I was in active service. And I remember him very well. Oh, well, we were very good comrades.”

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