The President, John Dramani Mahama, has commissioned the Kwabenya Community Senior High School in the Ga East Municipality of the Greater Accra Region.
The Kwabenya Community Senior High School is the first ever public secondary school in the Ga East Municipality since the split of the municipality into two (with the new one being the La-Nkwantanang-Madina Municipal Assembly).
The school is one of the 200 Community Day Senior High Schools promised by President Mahama in 2012.
The school has facilities such as the famous “E-Block”, which comprises a 24-Unit Classroom Block, an Administration Office, Library, Computer Laboratory and Staff Common Room as well as laboratories for Physics, Chemistry and Biology and Vocational and Technical workshops
There is also multi-purpose Hall/Canteen, 8-Unit Blocks of Teachers Flat and Headmaster’s Bungalow with a Boys’ Quarters attached as well as a Playing Field and Gate-House.
Construction works started in July last year and no sooner than that a court suit was brought against the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) who donated the land and the Ga East Municipal Assembly (GEMA) regarding the ownership of the land.
The Court, after a series of hearing, eventually granted GAEC and GEMA their request for an out-of-court settlement resulting in the release of the Assembly’s Palm Plantation site, also on GAEC land, to the plaintiff in exchange for the site for the construction of the school which was the subject of dispute of ownership.
Fortunately for the accused, the Court did not put an injunction on the ongoing construction of the school thus allowing for a smooth and peaceful completion within the stipulated time of twelve (12) months.
In October, prior to the commissioning, the school opened for admission and currently has student population of 653 studying various courses including General Science, General Arts, Home Economics, Visual Arts, Business and Technical.
The school also has 34 teaching and 12 non-teaching staff.
The ceremony to commission the school by the President was characterized with massive ecstatic crowd who thronged the premises of the School to witness the historic occasion including Chiefs, Faith-Based Leaders, Traders, school children from the various Basic Schools in the municipality and a host of people from different backgrounds as well teaming party supporters.
The Chief of Kwabenya, Nii Kwao Obuabasa I, in his welcome address, expressed profound gratitude to the President for construction of the school and numerous other projects in the municipality such as the construction of a 100-Bed Capacity District Hospital at Atomic, the Municipal Circuit Court, Electoral Commission Office, the Cluster of Schools projects which is in progress, the newly awarded 6-Unit Classroom Block at Kwabenya to replace the former land which was allocated for the construction of the SHS, the Kwabenya Community Library and Computer Lab which is currently being used as a Centre for learning of Chinese Language and the development of the Dome Market among others.
He also commended the President for the improvements in some of the roads but made some further request in this direction.
“We have also seen good improvements in the road networks especially the asphalt road from St. Johns through Haatso and other places. Mr President, just as Oliver Twist asked for more, we want to draw your attention to the Kwabenya-Berekusu road, Kwabenya-Mayera road and the other road networks in the municipality”.
Nii Kwao Obuabasa again appealed to the President urge the Ghana Water Company to speed up work to connect water to the various communities and homes following the completion of a reservoir Ashongman Estates.
The President, John Dramani Mahama, addressing the obviously excited gathering to officially commission the Kwabenya Community Senior High School, said since taking office in 2012, his government has put in place numerous measures to improve access and quality of education in the country.
He mentioned the ongoing construction of 200 Community Day Senior High Schools, expansion of existing school blocks, supply of core textbooks to all students in Ghana and distribution of more than hundred million exercise books to children across the country as well as investing in teacher training and organizing refresher courses for teachers across the country as some of the many interventions his administration has done to improve the quality of and access to education.
“Indeed, the period of the NDC administration has seen the largest enrollment of teachers ever in the history of Ghana. from the year 2010 to last year, we have recruited seventy-eight thousand teachers to teach in our schools and so the notion that we are not employing teachers is absolutely wrong”, the President noted.
He further disclosed that “we (Government) have received financial clearance to employ more teachers especially including two thousand, five hundred math and science teachers because we need more math and science teachers to be able to coach our children to pass”.
President Mahama also spoke of one of his novelty interventions in the educational sector which will allow pupils and students access to teaching through the internet.
“Just this afternoon I launched a new program called the I Box. I launched it at the Fafraha school and so it is launched already. It’s a new learning tool that we have introduced which is based on a Wi-Fi system and we are placing it in hundred and twenty secondary schools”.
He underscored the significant transformation which have occurred in the educational sector owing to the interventions put in place.
“This expansion we are doing and the investment we are doing in expanding secondary education is paying off because the statistic show that, in 2012, the transition rate from JHS to SHS was only 51 percent. It meant that 51 percent of children continued from JHS into SHS. Today as I speak, as at last year 2015 the transition rate from JHS to SHS has risen from 51 percent in 2012 to 67 percent in 2015. It means that more of our children are gaining access in to a secondary education”.
The Minister of Education, Prof. Mrs Jane Naana Opoku Agyemang, who also spoke at the function said the massive transformation in the sector was as a result of the huge investments made by the Government and appealed to all stakeholders to support the administration to deliver more.
Hon. John Kwao Sackey, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Ga East Municipal Assembly, was glad about the happenings of the day and thanked the President for providing the municipality with its first public second cycle educational facility.
He called on the Chiefs and people in the municipality to own the school and support to maintain to it to benefit future generations.
Among the dignitaries at the function were the Municipal Coordinating Director (MCD), Alhaji Shehu Awudu Kadiri, Municipal Director of Education (MDE), Ms. Florence Esi Damali, and Headmistress of the Kwabenya Community Senior High School, Mrs Elizabeth Sam.
By: Okunyin Boaz Orlan-Hackman