Somé Tutu Za 2023 launched

The chiefs and people of Somé Traditional Area in the Ketu South Municipality of the Volta region, have launched their annual cultural festival, ‘Somé Tutu Za’ with a call on all Indigenes and residents to unite and pull together for the socio-economic development of the area.

The festival, which is celebrated in November each year, has not been held for some years now due to some chieftaincy-related issues and other challenges.

Having lined up some activities to make it a memorable one, the 2023 edition of the festival is set to be a conduit for uniting, reviving, and redeveloping the once socio-economically vibrant and culturally rich area.

The activities included; a mini durbar, cultural display, arts and crafts exhibition, unity torch relay, youth forum, health walk, sports and games, music jamboree, health screening, and children’s durbar, among others.

It will be climaxed with a grand durbar of Chiefs and Queen mothers and Elders on Saturday, November 25, in Agbozume the traditional capital.

Torgbi Adamah III, (Makorsor) Paramount Chief of the Somé Traditional Area, launching the festival, said, it had been his desire to revive the festival since taking office as Paramount Chief some eight years ago, but could not do so due to the many disputes and chieftaincy issues he has had to battle with.

‘It has always been my heart’s desire to revive our festival, the ‘Somé Tutu Za’ to bring all of us together and to sell our culture and traditions to the world, but my hands have been tied due to the incessant disputes and misunderstandings that have characterized my enstoolment some eight years ago – but thanks to the Almighty God and your support, those disputes and misunderstandings have all been resolved and Somé can now take its rightful place in the Ghanaian traditional landscape,’ Torgbi Adamah said.

The Paramount Chief who is also the President of the newly inaugurated Somé Traditional Council appealed to his subjects to bury all differences, put the past behind them and unite for the forward march of the area.

‘We must all understand that we are one people from one ancestry with a common destiny and purpose. Divisions squabbles and rancour will only retard our progress as a people – let us all put the past behind us and work together with fellow feeling for one another and with the help of the Almighty God, we can achieve our objectives and see a better and prosperous Somé,’ he said.

The Paramount Chief called on all indigenes of the area and for that matter all the people of the Volta region to be proud of their origin as Ewe people and inculcate the habit of speaking the Ewe language and the cultural values of the Ewe people in the younger generation, adding it was disheartening to see some Ewes, especially the youth shying away from speaking their mother tongue.

Torgbi Adamah advised the youth to eschew societal vices and hold fast to only what was good and beneficial to society as they were the future leaders of the area and the nation.

He assured of his continuous commitment to the cause of the Traditional Area and promised to continue to work with all his Divisional and Sub Chiefs as well the Queen mothers and Elders towards a peaceful, united, and prosperous Somé.

Mr Charles Nypson Agbagedy, a retired educationist and media practitioner who is Chairman of the festival planning committee enjoined all citizens of Somé to rally behind the committee and the Paramount Chief towards a memorable and successful festival.

He advised the Indigenes not to be lukewarm in the traditional area’s affairs but to contribute their quota towards its development.

Dr Daniel Workman Atsu, a businessman and indigene of the area, who chaired the event praised Torgbi Adamah for his determination to turn things around for the traditional area and to bring back the esteemed festival of the people of Somé.

He commended the Paramount Chief for the immense role he played in ensuring that the area got a traditional council status.

Dr Atsu also appealed to the indigenes to unite and pull resources together for the socio-economic advancement of the area.

The 2023 ‘Somé Tutu Za’ is being celebrated on the theme: ‘Uniting all of Somé for development.’

Source: Ghana News Agency

Tema Judges and Lawyers donate stationaries to public schools in Ashaiman

Akoto envisions agriculture-led growth for Ghana’s economic transformationThe Tema Bench, Bar, and Prosecution Court Unit (TBBPCU), through its Public-School outreach programme, has donated stationery to about 2,000 pupils and students in some public schools in Ashaiman.

The items include books, boxes of pens, mathematical sets, biscuits, yoghurt, and boxes of sanitary pads.

The beneficiary schools were St. Augustine Roman Catholic Junior High School; Seventh Day Adventist JHS; Presbyterian A and B JHS; Nurumustafia Islamic JHS; and Celestial School Complex.

Mr Emmanuel Kumadey, Legal Practitioner and a member of the TBBPCU who presented the stationery said the donation forms part of the judges’ and lawyers’ ambition to empower the youth with knowledge, stressing that the group has realized that most often the uneducated are lured to commit petty crimes in society.

He said the judges and the lawyers had decided to embark on social outreach at the various schools where problems arise to encourage the children to sit in class, study, and be productive citizens for the nation.

‘The lawyers are not interested in taking money from their clients and judges punishing people who commit crimes; we want to transform society, so the initiative by TBBPCU to support educational institutions with some basic materials and also engage the pupils and students to empower them to become productive,’ he stressed.

Mr Kumadey said it was a vital transition stage in their lives, and when they listen to their advice, the right decision will be taken to further their education to the secondary level.

Mr Clifford Henaku Budu, the Education Director for Ashaiman Municipal, who received the items on behalf of the beneficiary schools, commended the judges and lawyers for the initiative to support the schools in transforming future leaders and reducing crime.

He said that through proper education, within a couple of years, the schools would be producing top-class professionals such as Judges, Lawyers, Doctors, police officers, Education officers, and Directors.

‘In fact, the height of it is that we are trusting God that in the next 20 years, we will be having sitting Parliamentarians and the President of Ghana from Ashaiman, not only Ashaiman, but a child in school around this time having this kind of exposure,’ he stressed.

Mr Budu said the journey to the next 20 years for the children to become professionals starts now based on what they are hearing, and other professionals in the same line will augment whatever they have started.

Madam Juliana Apaliyah, the Headmistress of St. Augustine, said it would motivate the children to achieve their aim.

Source: Ghana News Agency

‘We must empower women and girls through STEM’ – STEMinist Foundation

Ms Stephanie Asabea Opoku, Administrative Officer for the STEMinist Foundation in Ghana, has reiterated the need to empower women and girls through Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Ms Opoku explained that Ghana must embrace a strategic two-way strategy while instilling the idea in women professionals. We must also encourage the girls to take up courses in STEM for them to be leaders in addressing the climate crisis as innovators, entrepreneurs, and creators of initiatives and businesses with significant environmental and social effects.

Ms Opoku said this at the Ghana News Agency’s stakeholder engagement is a progressive media platform for state and non-state actors to contribute to national development.

She stressed the urgent need to step up efforts to create pathways for women and girls to enter the field.

According to her, removing barriers to entry, retention, and promotion in academia, government service, and the commercial sector, as well as boosting access to educational opportunities starting at a young age, are necessary to achieve equity for women and girls in STEM disciplines.

The Administrator of the STEMinist Foundation emphasised that for women in STEM, fusing knowledge with enthusiasm was crucial for both personal and professional development.

She stated that ‘we need to usher more women into STEM leadership positions’ to encourage more women to seek STEM jobs. If they are given a female professor, women are more inclined to major in STEM.

Women are more likely to apply for leadership positions and speak up for themselves if they see more female leaders, according to research.

Ms Opoku pointed out that unconscious bias persisted and that some executives still think men with the same qualifications are more likely to succeed than women.

She said, ‘Especially in STEM professions, we all have the obligation to eradicate unconscious prejudices in hiring and personnel selections.

By encouraging women to pursue STEM-related occupations, the Foundation hopes to aid in a just transition to a regenerative economy.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Association of Women Accountants Ghana mentor students of Sokode SHTS

The members of the Association of Women Accountants Ghana (AWAG), have extended their career development mentorship and public outreach to the Sokode Senior High Technical School (SOSTECH).

Madam Mawushie Dzikunoo, the President of AWAG said the objective of the mentorship outreach, was to equip the students especially those offering business courses with insights, and knowledge and align their interests with future career goals.

She said apart from the gesture, being a civic responsibility of AWAG to mentor students with a focus on the girl-child, it was to help them to set goals and act.

She advised the students to aspire to become Chartered Accountants by opting for accounting as a profession.

Madam Dzikunoo urged the students to shun social vices such as alcoholism, taking illicit drugs and engaging in occultism, but ‘you are to justify the investments of your parents focusing on your academic.’

Mrs Vivian Lovelace Worlanyo-Deh, the Volta Region leader of AWAG, sharing her own career pathway with the students said she had to combine her work with schooling, performing house chores and making babies in an innovative manner to reach her current position.

She encouraged the students to remain dedicated, focused, persevere and sacrifice for the present, reminding them that ‘beyond the skies will be the beginning point.’

She said members of the Association would make themselves available to help students to take challenges in new ways and urged them to dedicate more time to their books to expand their career options.

Mrs Worlanyo-Deh said the Institute of Chartered Accountants at Okponglo offers a training programme for zealous students eager to pursue accounting urging them to take advantage.

Mr Alex Gbadegbe, the Head of the Business Department of SOSTECH was grateful to AWAG for settling on them with a student population of 1,188 and 126 management staff including 37 non-teaching had achieved many laurels in academic and extra-curriculum activities.

He said the mentorship outreach was timely as he believes that would promote studiousness, perseverance, and leadership at the Business Department, with its 52 students offering accounting.

Members of AWAG broke into cells to listen to the concerns of the students while providing on-the-spot answers to guide them.

The Ho Chapter of the AWAG was inaugurated as part of the programme.

Some drinks were donated to the school in addition to branded AWAG T-Shirts.

Source: Ghana News Agency

St. Paul’s Senior High School and Minor Seminary ‘SPACO’ marks 65 milestone

The Board of Governors, staff, old students (Conquerors) and students of St. Paul’s Senior High School and Minor Seminary (SPACO) have climaxed the 65th anniversary, speech, and prize-giving day celebration of the school.

The durbar, which had a representative from the Ministry of Education, Regional and Municipal Directors of Education, the Bishop of Keta-Akatsi Diocese, heads of sister schools and traditional leaders among others in attendance, saw deserving students, teaching and non-teaching staff and past headmasters of SPACO celebrated.

The two-week-long celebration featured activities including cadet induction for first-year students, games between teachers and students, inter houses quiz competition, career counselling, an exhibition from the Science, Agriculture, Visual Arts and Social Science departments, and the launch of the SPACO endowment fund.

Mr Larry Kwesi Jiagge, Board Chairman, SPACO in a welcome address said aside from the growth in student enrolment, the 65 years of the school’s existence did not lead to any significant growth and development.

‘The physical infrastructure has not witnessed any significant change or improvement, neither has any significant addition been made in the immediate past years. They remain the same and are therefore under continuous stress.’

Mr Jiagge lamented that the academic indicators in the school over the years had also witnessed a downward trend, something he described as ‘a departure from the past records of the school also known as border university.

He explained the gloomy exposition was not meant to act as a damper on the celebration but rather, ‘a wake-up call to all the stakeholders’ to collectively work towards rejuvenating ‘a once vibrant school community.’

He extended the Board’s appreciation to the Conquerors for their immense contribution which was helping to provide some form of hope to the school while commending the school management for the significant improvement in the academic performance of the school for the 2022 year assuring that the Board would continue to support all initiatives aimed at reviving academic performance and development of the SPACO.

Mr Emmanuel Hope Kwodwo Dogodzi, SPACO Headmaster appreciated all stakeholders who had supported the first catholic second cycle institution established in the southern sector since its inception said, without them, SPACO, which products could be found in all sectors of the Ghanaian and world economy including politicians, lawyers, civil servants, doctors, lecturers, and bankers would have been no more.

He called for the support of all to address urgent needs of the school which include staff bungalows, about 200 computers for the two laboratories, books for the library, classroom blocks and a new school bus to help in the overall goal of improving teaching and learning in the school.

Madam Abla Dzifa Gomashie, Member of Parliament for Ketu South in a solidarity message delivered through Mr Mark David Doe congratulated the school on the celebration and reminded them of the need to uphold principles, rules and regulations of Catholicism while charging the Conquerors to help put the younger ones on bigger pedestals that they (Conquerors) could ever mount.

Source: Ghana News Agency

UENR-Jiangsu University create academic opportunities for Ghanaian Students

The University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR), Sunyani and the Jiangsu University (JSU), China have sealed a collaboration with the launch of a four-year Undergraduate Programme alongside the establishment of the African Agricultural Mechanisation Demonstration Centre Project.

Through the four-year Undergraduate Programme, the JSU intend to adopt some Senior High Schools (SHSs) in Ghana as affiliated high schools where students would be selected each year to further their education at the JSU, starting from bachelor level to Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).

Thus, students could either be enrolled directly at the JSU four-year academic programme where they would spend the first two years at the JSU partner universities in Ghana and proceed to JSU to complete the remaining two years for graduation and certification.

The African Agricultural Mechanisation Demonstration Centre too being hosted by the UENR is the first of its kind in Africa by a foreign university.

Co-sponsored by the JSU, UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organisation), and Alliance Companies of China, the Project is aimed to assist students in learning and acquiring the necessary skills to promote agriculture mechanisation and support farmers to hire or affordably acquire agricultural tools, a variety of equipment and products.

Speaking at the launch in Sunyani, Professor Elvis Asare-Bediako, the Vice Chancellor of the UNER said the unveiling of the four-year undergraduate programme and the Centre, ‘ushered in an era brimming with boundless opportunities, unparalleled innovation and remarkable growth, both for the thriving lands of Africa and the continent’s strong relationship with the people of China.’

He said, ‘At the very core of UNER’s mission lies an unwavering dedication to excellence and a visionary pursuit to revolutionize education and research within the realms of energy and natural resources.’

Prof. Asare-Bediako described the partnership as an embodiment of the University’s resolute commitment to providing an all-encompassing educational pathway that equipped its students with the skills and fortitude needed to navigate the swiftly changing global landscape.

He said the four-year Undergraduate Programme stood as a beacon of opportunity for Ghanaian students, igniting an academic journey that transcended conventional boundaries to nurture their talents, expand their horizons and endow them with skills essential to excel in a myriad of fields, either engineering, technology, or medicine and beyond.

Prof. Asare-Bediako lauded the African Agricultural Mechanisation Demonstration Centre Project, saying it was, ‘a herald of paradigmatic transformation in our approach to agriculture a fundamental sector that lies at the very heart of Africa’s progress and well-being.’

The Centre he said served as ‘a testament to our unwavering dedication to revolutionizing agricultural practices through the fusion of cutting-edge technology, transformative education and international collaboration.’

Prof. Asare-Bediako noted that the Centre stood tall as a beacon of hope, empowering Ghanaian revered farmers, and other stakeholders within the intricate web of the food supply chain, arming them with the requisite tools, knowledge, and resources to surmount the ever-evolving challenges they faced.

He said harnessing the might of innovation and fostering a spirit of cooperation signified the commencement of a journey towards a sustainable agricultural ecosystem that fortified food security, enhanced livelihoods, and propelled economic development across the entire African continent.

Highlighting the four-year Undergraduate Programme, Prof. Daniel Nana Adu, the Director of Collaborations and Coordinator of the Belt and Road Initiative, African Sector, JSU explained that graduates under the programme could proceed to the master’s level through to PhD under various scholarship packages based on their performance.

The programme, he added would help the Ghanaian youth to acquire high-level engineering, technology and machinery skills and produce well-qualified trained farmers, medical personnel, computer experts and other skilled professionals for the development of the country.

Prof. Kwasi Nsiah-Gyabaah, the Chair of Governing Council of the University who presided said the event not only marked a turning point in the academic journey of UENR students but also held immense importance for the Bono Region, Ghana, and the entire African continent.

He said it provided an opportunity for particularly the Ghanaian youth to equip themselves with necessary skills, knowledge and global perspectives empowering them to excel in diverse fields to contribute meaningfully to the progress of the society.

Source: Ghana News Agency