The Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for the Ga East Municipal Assembly (GEMA), Hon. John Kwao Sackey, has announced plans by the Assembly to enhance the quality of education in the municipality. He made this disclosure at a parade to celebrate Ghana’s 59th Independence Day at Abokobi, the municipal capital.
The Ga East Municipal Assembly since its split in July, 2012, has continued massive investments in education, particularly, infrastructure, aimed at improving the quality of education in the municipality.
These include the Papao Community Presby Model Basic School, the Kwabenya Community Library and John Armarh Tetteh ICT Centre, and the rehabilitation of the Taifa Community Basic Junior High School among others.
The MCE, Hon. John Kwao Sackey, delivering a speech to mark Ghana’s 59th Independence Day Celebrations at a Parade at Abokobi, said, the Assembly, in a three-year development plan (Medium Term Development Plan – MTDP 2014-17), has budgeted for various educational projects and programmes to further boost the quality of education in the municipality.
These include the completion of a 3-Storey, 18-Unit Classroom Block at Taifa Junior High School (JHS), construction of a 3-Unit Classroom Block for Kwabenya-Atomic M/A 5 Basic School and a 2-Unit Semi-detached Teachers’ Quarters at Adenkrebi.
Additionally, he said, the Assembly has allocated funds for the rehabilitation of a Water Closet (WC) Toilet with drilling and installation of water facility for Kwabenya-Atomic Basic School. We have rehabilitated a 1No. 10-Seater WC Toilet with drilling and installation of water facility for the Akporman Primary School.
He further noted that various GETFund projects which came to standstill have been compiled and forwarded to the GETFund Secretariat and will soon see continuation of works.
The MCE also mentioned that the Assembly will, this year, support 100 brilliant but needy pupils in the municipality and support the Municipal Best Teacher Awards Celebrations as well as the Municipal Science, Mathematics and Technology (STME) clinic to complement the physical development projects.
According to Hon. Kwao Sackey, funds have been secured through a joint partnership between the Government of Ghana, through the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), and the Social Investment Fund (SIF), for the construction of a 6-Unit classroom block with 8-Seater Latrines at Papao, and a Teachers’ Quarters with potable water (borehole fitted with hand-pump) at Abokobi this year.
To cap it all, “the Assembly is also a beneficiary to the special Day Senior High Model School promised by the President for which construction is progressing steadily and expected to be completed by end of October this year. This is an ample evidence of the Better Ghana Agenda”, the MCE stated.
Hon. Kwao Sackey also touched on other developments in the education sector of his municipality such as the delivery of 2,500 dual desks, procured through funding from the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund), to the Education Directorate for distribution to 33 basic public schools identified to be in need of them.
“We will be following this up with the distribution of school uniforms to needy pupils within the municipality”, he added.
He congratulated the Education Directorate, teachers, parents and pupils for the sterling performance in last year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) which placed the Private Schools and Public Schools within the Ga East Municipality 6th and 3rd in the Greater Accra Region, when the results were analyzed for both Private and Public Schools and only the Public Schools, respectively.
“This is a great improvement on previous performance. I wish to urge you all to learn harder, excel and make yourselves and the nation proud” the MCE remarked.
He encouraged parents to take advantage of the opportunity given by the West Africa Examinations Council (WAEC) for children who do not perform well in the BECE to re-sit to better their grades.
The MCE said the School Feeding Programme in the municipality was doing well and pledged the Assembly’s commitment to providing the necessary support for the caterers on the programme to provide highly nutritious and delicious meal for the children which will help them develop well mentally and physically while increasing enrollment.
Touching on the theme for the celebrations, “INVESTING IN THE YOUTH FOR GHANA’S TRANSFORMATION”, Hon. Kwao Sackey said “one of the surest ways to ensure that our independence has real meaning and impact on our lives is to develop our human resource to meet the demands of current trends in development and to own our nation and rely on our local resources for development”.
To exemplify this claim, the MCE stated that “the government, under the Presidency of His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, has initiated a number of policies, programmes and projects aimed at promoting youth development and job creation to reduce the unemployment particularly among the youth”.
He mentioned some of the policies and interventions as the Youth Employment Policy, Youth Employment Agency (YEA), Youth Enterprise Support (YES), and Youth in Agriculture, and numerous investments in the education sector aimed at promoting quality and access to education.
He said the Ga East Municipal Assembly has also initiated programmes and projects aimed at facilitating the development of youth and supporting them to acquire employable skills and make a living, through the National Youth Authority, in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, Social Welfare and Community Development.
“Under the Youth in Agriculture initiative, over 30 youth drawn from 20 youth groups within the municipality were trained in vegetable farming, resulting in the cultivation of about five (5) acres of Pepper (Legon 18 species) within the last quarter of 2015. This year, over 200 youths are expected to benefit from training in General Vegetable Bloc Farming, with the view of cultivating over 10 acres of various vegetables to earn them income” he announced.
He further stated that the Assembly had set up a revolving fund to support and sustain the initiatives by providing low-interest credit facility to the youth to improve their farms.
Hon. Kwao Sackey again stated that “about 300 members of the youth groups in the municipality are expected to be trained in the Youth-In-Entrepreneurship modules such as production and post-harvest technology, livestock production including piggery, grasscutter, rabbits etc., Aqua Culture, and Tailoring among others. This will give them employable skills and also make them self-employed”.
He added that the National Youth Authority was also collaborating with the Youth Enterprise Support (YES) programmes to provide training in Field Construction Site Management, stating that the programme had, since the last quarter of last year, trained 100 youth in the municipality.
On her part, the Municipal Director of Education (MDE), Ms. Florence Esi Damali, commended the government’s efforts at enhancing the quality of education in the country.
She mentioned the construction of the 200 Day Senior High Schools, infrastructure for public basic schools and provision of free school uniforms as some of the interventions which will go a long way to improve education in the country.
Ms. Damali expressed gratitude to the MCE for supporting the Directorate to deliver quality education in the municipality and commended the Member of parliament and Assembly Members for their role in.
To further enhance and sustain quality education in the municipality, the MDE said her Directorate has initiated the School Performance Appraisal Meetings (SPAM), which brings stakeholders – Students, Teachers, Parent-Teacher Associations and School Management Committees (PTAs/SMCs), Opinion Leaders, community members, among others, together, to evaluate BECE results and set new targets.
She urged the stakeholders to “recognize the unique potential but the vulnerable nature of our youth and lend them a helping hand in any capacity we may find ourselves. It is through this that we can indeed create the benign atmosphere for fruitful investment in our youth for Ghana’s transformation”.
DNA Victoria Esinam Assah-Offei, Greater Accra Regional Commander for the Narcotics Control Board, who was a special guest at the function, advised the school children and youth to stay away from the tendencies to use illegal drugs which will not only destroy their future but can kill them as well.
The Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya Constituency, Hon. Lawyer Sarah Adwoa Safo and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Parliamentary Candidate, Mr. Nurudeen Mohammed, both urged their supporters to tolerate each other to ensure a peaceful and incident-free election.
By: Okunyin Boaz Orlan-Hackman