Education Minister joins 50th Anniversary Launch of Ho Technical University
SPEECH BY THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION,
DR. MATTHEW OPOKU-PREMPEH AT THE LAUNCHING OF THE
50TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION OF THE HO TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
It is a pleasure to be at the Launch of the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the Ho Technical University
Mr. Chairman, on this occasion, I bring you warm felicitations from the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo.
I take this opportunity, on behalf of my Ministry, to also congratulate the University for achieving this milestone. Fifty years in the life of an institution is no mean achievement. It is the expectation of government and my Ministry that the managers of this great institution will continue to work hard to improve on the laurels that have so far been achieved.
Over these 50 years, this university, which started life as the Ho Polytechnic, has made remarkable contributions to the life of this country by contributing to its manpower needs. The nation is grateful for its contribution, and it is my hope and vision that as a technical university, you will continue to play a vital role in providing middle and senior level technical manpower to address the development needs of our nation.
Mr Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen, whilst this country has taken some important steps in resolving our technical and vocational skills needs, I believe that there is more work to be done to consolidate those needs and to truly put this country on the path to accelerated development. And that is why I am excited about your theme for the launch. I believe that in order to consolidate this institution’s gains, we have to examine ways to grow TVET in this country.
Mr. Chairman, the government will do its utmost to improve upon facilities in the Technical Universities and Polytechnics. The government is aware of the fact that in our quest for industrialization, we need well-trained men and women with the required skills and competencies to fill the manpower positions in industry. Certainly, the right men and women to play this role in our economy include those graduands from our Technical Universities and Polytechnics.
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, it is an undeniable fact that in industrialised countries, the ratio in the distribution formular of the labour force generally shows that the technical work-force with practical skills greatly out-numbers those with raw knowledge. Consequently, we cannot underestimate the place of Technical University and Polytechnic training in the country’s onward march towards prosperity.
The Government, through the Ministry of Education and Council for Technical, Vocational Education and Training (COTVET), will continue to support technical education in general.
However, we will expect you to align your programmes to address pertinent problems affecting our country. Technical Universities in Ghana, just like their counterparts anywhere, must take their rightful place in finding solutions to challenges. In so doing, a very good case can be made for support for Technical Universities.
Mr. Chairman, as a nation, we have for a long time in the past not taken seriously, Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET). This trend must end and it must be now. The government is determined to give sufficient attention to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET). This will lead to churning out men and women with the needed practical application of knowledge or technical skill that are structured to meet the economic and social challenges facing our nation.
Mr. Chairman, the records show that Technical Universities and Polytechnics have benefited appreciably from the GETFund for research and staff development. I, however, still believe that more should be done to bring the Technical Universities and Polytechnics to an appreciable level.
As a country, we owe it to ourselves to identify areas and strategies by which we can power our industrial growth and bring prosperity to our people. Our citizens deserve no less and must as a matter of urgency be assisted in lifting themselves out of deprivation. This government believe that in an increasingly globalised world with fluidity of labour, technical and vocational skills are prized assets for any citizen. It is therefore imperative that we overhaul the image of these skills and make them desirable as a first and not a last option.
On that note, I wish to once again, on behalf of H. E. the President, Nana Akufo-Addo and on my own behalf, to warmly congratulate the Ho Technical University on the occasion of the launch of its 50th Anniversary celebrations.
I now have the singular honour to declare the year-long 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the Ho Technical University, duly launched.
Long live the Ho Technical University! Long live Ghana!!