President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Saturday joined world leaders to mourn Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, who died on Friday at the age of 99.
In a message of condolence sent to Queen Elizabeth II and to the British Royal Family, the President recounted Prince Philip’s visits to Ghana in 1961 and in 1999, saying, “The Ghanaian people have excellent memories of his dynamic and engaging personality.”
The President noted that Prince Philip’s life had had a positive impact on Ghana, stating, “Over 750,000 young Ghanaians have benefitted from the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, the great initiative he established in 1956, 65 years ago, to unearth talents amongst young people the world over.”
“It is now known in Ghana as the Head of State Award Scheme, and I had the honour, two days before his death, of cutting the sod for the construction of its own administrative office building, making Ghana one of the few countries in the world, and the second in Africa, to have such an office. His place in Ghanaian history is secure, and we appreciate very much his contact with us.”
“The British people have lost a redoubtable public servant, and we wish him peaceful rest in the bosom of the Almighty until the Last Day of the Resurrection when we shall all meet again,” he said of Prince Philip, who occupied an enviable place in the British monarchy as husband of the Sovereign for over seven decades.
Prince Philip, the longest-serving consort in British history, died on Friday morning at Windsor Castle, Berkshire, some 30 kilometers west of London.
He recently had a month-long spell in hospital and was recovering at the castle. He was taken to London’s King Edward VII Hospital on February 16, 2021 as for an undisclosed infection and was expected to remain there “for a few days of observation and rest,” the Buckingham Palace said at the time.
His illness was not related to the coronavirus.
The Prince was then moved to a new hospital in London, St Bartholomew’s, where doctors performed testing and performed an operation on him for a pre-existing heart condition. He was discharged on March 16, 2021
Prince Philip was born into Greek and Danish royal families in 1921 on the Greek island of Corfu. His family left Greece when Philip was a year old after the end of the Greco-Turkish War.
He spent his childhood in France and Germany, and then later moved to Britain, joined the Navy in 1939, during which time he met the-then Princess Elizabeth and got married to her in 1947, prior to her ascension to the throne in 1952.
The Prince renounced his Greek royal title, and became a British citizen. He was given the title His Royal Highness and named as the Duke of Edinburgh by the Queen’s father, King George VI, in respect of their marriage.
Philip retired from active naval service in 1951 and was made a British prince in 1957. Since then, he had been the queen’s consort, where he supported the Queen in her role as the reigning monarch, and also invested his time in supporting conservation and engineering organisations.
He was a patron, president or a member of more than 750 organisations. He retired from public duties in 2017.
The couple had four children together – Charles, Prince of Wales, Anne, Princess Royal, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex – eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.