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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 March 2007, 14:43 GMT
President given university honour
His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor, President of Ghana
The president was invited on a state visit to the UK by the Queen
The president of the Republic of Ghana has been given an Honorary Fellowship from a university in Merseyside.

His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor was awarded the fellowship by Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) during a state visit to the UK.

While in Merseyside he is set to give a lecture on the theme of Human Rights and The Citizen at St George's Hall.

However, protesters are planning to lobby the talk to highlight the persecution of homosexuals in Ghana.

Gay rights campaigners claim that while he has a good record in other areas of human rights, Mr Kufuor presides over a country in which homosexuals live in fear of persecution.

'Positive signal'

On 6 March 1957, Ghana celebrated the end of colonial rule when it became the first black African nation to achieve independence.

Mr Kufuor was first appointed President of Ghana in December 2000 and won a second term four years later.

Professor Michael Brown, LJMU's Vice Chancellor said: "We are honoured to welcome His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor to the University and to the city of Liverpool.

"Few other individuals, or nations, so clearly exemplify the University's ethos of Dream, Plan, Achieve.

"John Kufuor and the people of Ghana have striven against unrest and instability to develop a vigorous democracy that sends out a positive signal in a volatile region of Africa and beyond."

The president also visited the Maritime Museum during his trip to Merseyside.

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