The Millennium Excellence Foundation has conferred on the Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, Rt. Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, the highest award as the Member of Parliament of the decade.
At a short ceremony held on the Floor of Parliament on Monday, July 26, 2021, the Chairperson of the Millennium Excellence Foundation, Grace Amey-Obeng observed that the foundation settled on him for this prestigious award in due recognition of his exceptional service to the country and the role of leadership he has played as a Parliamentarian for close to three decades.
He was presented with a golden plaque cast in the image of the map of Ghana and a citation which extolled him as an excellent law maker, developmental agent and an effective leader.The citation reads:
Congratulations! Congratulations! Congratulations!
“The Life Patron, HRM Otumfuo Osei Tutu II – Asantehene and the illustrious Board of Governors of the Millennium Excellence Foundation, are pleased to confer on you the coveted Millennium Excellence Award for Member of Parliament of the Decade in high recognition of your outstanding contribution to national development as an MP.
“You are the true personification of the saying that if you give the world the best of what you have it will come back to you. Your rise to the office of the third most important person in the Republic of Ghana is exemplary.
“In a country where the attrition rate of parliament is so high that Parliament can swing from an over 60 majority in the 7th Parliament to an almost hanged one in the 8th, your retention in parliament since 1992 underscores the distinction with which you serve your people and country.
“By a miracle of fate, you were returned to the House from which you had voluntarily decided to retire from as the Speaker in the most dramatic of fashions as a reward for your commitment to excellence in service. Throughout your career, you served with brilliance and maturity; an attribute that makes you appealing to people across the political divides.
“You have been a development agent, an advocate for democratic ideals and a role model to many aspiring politicians. As Minority Leader, you kept the then NPP Government on its toes and even as Majority Leader, you did not hesitate to stand against your own Government whenever you felt it necessary. You are a true democrat, patriot, statesman and living legend.”
The RT. Hon. Speaker’s Acceptance
The Speaker in his acceptance speech, observed that “Indeed, the statement that my choice for this award was in recognition of my “unwavering pursuit of fairness, excellence and the developmental vision of the parliamentary affairs sector in Ghana” is candid and humbling as it reflects the principles which have guided me this far.
The Speaker dedicated the award to the entire House for the strides that have been made by both sides of the isle to the wheels of democracy moving over the years.
He also however, used the occasion to appeal to the MPs to ensure that their conduct both in and out of the House reflects the trust reposed in them by the citizenry since their performance is constantly being assessed by the general public.
“Hon Members, this award, to all intents and purposes, is a manifestation that our conduct both on the floor of the House and outside the precinct of Parliament is under scrutiny. Also, it is a reflection of the fact that the House is constantly being monitored and assessed in the performance of our duties by the generality of the public,” he said.
The Millennium Excellence Foundation
The Millennium Excellence Foundation was founded in 1998 by Ambassador, Ashim Morton to promote excellence in Ghana and Africa through recognizing and rewarding successful enterprises.
An architect by profession and entrepreneur, Ambassador Morton returned to Ghana after several years of sojourn in the United States to contribute his quota to the development of Ghana and Africa as a whole.
Having been a witness to the negative outlook and poor governance Stories coming from Africa on a daily basis, Ambassador Morton was moved to change the narrative by highlighting successful enterprises and personalities who work selflessly to bring about change in Ghana and on the African continent. This he sought to achieve through the institutionalization of the special award for excellent Leadership captioned Millennium Excellence Awards. Its Life Patron is HRM Otumfour Osei Tutu Il, the Asantehene.
The Millennium Excellence Awards which was initially focused on Ghana was privately funded by corporate organizations and individuals every five years. It had recognized about 20 institutions and individuals for their contribution to national development within the first ten years after the maiden Award Ceremony held on the eve of the Millennium 2000.
Following extensive research over those years, Ambassador Morton, in consultation with the Life Patron of the Foundation, decided to extend his reach to the entire continent of Africa.
The Lifetime Africa Achievement Prize was subsequently introduced and is held every two years in different African countries with the same noble objective of promoting enterprise and excellence on the continent.
Selection of awardees follows a rigorous process through which a Research Team provides a list of potential nominees after extensive research work, which list is thoroughly vetted and decided upon by the Board of distinguished Governors.