20th congregation: CCTU appeals to government for infrastructural support

The Cape Coast Technical University (CCTU) has appealed to government to help construct more buildings and complete stalled projects in the school to ease the infrastructural deficit.

Professor Kwaku Adutwum Ayim Boakye, Vice Chancellor of the school, said students accommodation, in particular, was a grave challenge, which management was exploring all means legal to help resolve the situation.

He made the appeal at the university’s 20th congregation where 1,130 students graduated.

Of the number, 262 graduated with Bachelor of Technology, 629 with Higher National Diploma (HND) and 239 at the Diploma level.

The 20th congregation is also a significant feature of the school’s recently launched 40th anniversary.

‘Our target is to double the available bed space within the next year. The least said about the stalled GETFund projects such as the commercial block and the auditorium, the better.

‘We appeal to the government to intervene quickly to complete our efforts at closing the infrastructure gap,’ he said.

rof Boakye said as part of efforts to improve on the infrastructure situation, the school had earmarked 10 large classrooms and 30 offices for complete refurbishment and retooling under phase one of its rehabilitation and refurbishment project.

He said the school in 2023, procured 110 new computers to facilitate teaching, learning and administrative work.

‘Work is progressing smoothly on the automation of the University’s library. The project which is 90 per cent done is to be completed by the end of March this year,’ he said.

The Vice Chancellor applauded the six schools of the university for their creditable performance in research, teaching and community services and highlighted further efforts to position the institution among the best globally.

He said university currently ran 70 academic programmes duly accredited by the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission (GTEC).

It had also introduced seven new programmes in the 2023/2024 academic year including M. Tech in Construction Technology and Management,
B. Tech in Virtualisation and Cloud Computing, Bachelor of Arts in Information Science and B. Tech in Industrial Arts and Design, he added.

‘The year under review also saw some senior members promoted to both teaching and administrative ranks,’ he said.

Prof Boakye disclosed that CCTU entered into some international and local partnerships to further its mandate as the leader in renewable energy.

‘We have signed various agreements with international partners in Europe and America and under such programmes, three staff and over 20 students are expected to visit various partner universities in the coming year,’ he said.

He said they were working to boost their internally generated funds by operationalising some key commercial centres.

This include the AVIC Centre, (an international holding corporation) was fully operational and had already serviced almost 100 cars, adding that no vehicle belonging to the university had been serviced outside since January 6, this year.

‘Soon to be rolled out under a similar
structure will be the university’s restaurant, bindery, metal fabrication centre, basic school, clinic and greenhouse,’ he added.

Touting some of their achievements, he said the CCTU Engineering Design and Innovation Centre (EDIC) had revamped its solar power tricycle with a new lithium iron phosphate battery to improve the range from about five kilometres to 130 kilometres.

He said the centre had also designed and installed Central Region’s first electronic charging hub and was ready to partner government and the private sector to set up charging hubs for electric vehicles.

‘The department of food science and post-harvest technology has successfully developed Ghana’s first ever sanitary pad made of bamboo. We are in the process of patenting the prototype for further production,’ he revealed.

‘Over the period, the university won grants and donations worth approximately three million Ghanaian Cedis,’ the VC announced.

The Vice Chancellor challenged the fresh graduates to be unique and committed to make a
difference in the society.

He admonished them to embrace challenges for their personal and professional growth, stressing that life would only give them what they worked for and nor what deserved.

‘Don’t be discouraged when you face challenges but rise up and forge ahead.

‘Seek to serve and not to be served, never stop learning and always be grateful for the little things in life,’ he advised.

Source: Ghana News Agency

VRA employees teach students of Prampram Senior High School

Thirty employees of the Volta River Authority (VRA) have embarked on a volunteer programme to teach students of the Prampram Senior High School in various subjects.

The staff took over the classes and taught the students Core Mathematics, Science, English Language, Social Studies, and elective courses such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Government, Geography, and Elective Mathematics.?

The interactive session fostered great discussions between the students and the VRA staff, during which the professionals encouraged the students to focus on their studies to achieve their dreams, using their own backgrounds and situations as a motivation.

Mr Robert Kwame Yeboah, the Principal Procurement Officer for VRA, said the programme was for staff to share their experiences with students to inspire them to achieve their best potential.?

Mr Yeboah, who taught the students Business Management, said it was important for them to understand business contracts and associated obligations to equip them wi
th foundational knowledge for ethical business practices.

He expressed joy at the opportunity to contributee to the students’ academic development through sharing his experience with them.?

Madam Gertrude Antwi-Boasiako, a VRA staff, who taught Marketing, described the session as interactive, with activities that shed light on marketing concepts, which the students had not previously been exposed to.?

Touching on Marketing Mix, she explained that it enabled producers to deliver goods effectively to clients.

The class concluded with group activities where students developed their own product ideas and formulated marketing strategies using the marketing mix.

She expressed satisfaction with the students’ engagement and imaginative ideas, particularly noting their plans to develop a product line for pregnant women.

‘Their enthusiasm and understanding of the taught concepts left me impressed and fulfilled,’ Madam Antwi-Boasiako added.

Ms Blessed Ononeze Favour, the Assistant Girls Prefect, said she had gain
ed appreciation for the real-world in marketing through the session.

She had also gained a broader scope of marketing beyond mere product sales, citing aspects of the lessons such as brand management and differentiation through trademarks.

Ms Favour expressed gratitude for the exposure and the examples given to help her understand the relevance of her course.?

Source: Ghana News Agency

Stonebwoy, Wiyaala deliver a stunner as 13th African Games close in style

The curtains were drawn on the 13th African Games staged in Accra, Saturday night, with thrilling performances from some of Africa’s finest artistes.

The closing ceremony held at the University of Ghana Stadium in Accra was another colourful spectacle, as athletes from all over Africa marched around the tracks to bid farewell after competing in the games.

The ceremony was climaxed by series of musical performances, but it was Ghanaian artiste, Stonebwoy, who lit up the stage, leaving over 10,000 fans ecstatic.

His opening performance with the ‘Kpo Keke’ hit song brought the venue alive. The accompanying fireworks and lighting that made the performance a delight to watch.

The award-winning Ghanaian artiste performed a selection from his repertoire of hit songs, and a new single with Nigeria’s Odumodulvck, and then he signed off on an impressive fashion.

Africa’s music lioness, Wiyaala, opened her performance, exuding her unique energy, and got the fans cheering her on.

Cameroonian rapper Stanley Enow, wh
o was sharply dressed, also made his presence felt on stage, as did Congolese musician Innoss’B.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo congratulated all athletes who won medals for their countries, especially the Ghanaian contingent, who won 68 medals.

He also commended the hard work of the coaches, officials, and supporting staff for their invaluable role in ensuring the successful organisation of the games.

Meanwhile, the 13th African Games, which was acclaimed as one of the best to have been held in recent memory, saw the likes of Egypt, Nigeria, and South Africa dominating the medal table.

Egypt will host the next African Games in 2027.

Source: Ghana News Agency

UHAS phase two project more than 90 per cent complete

The second phase construction of the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) main campus in Ho is more than 90 per cent complete.

The US$68 million China Phase-Two project would provide what is to be the largest nursing and midwifery school in West Africa, a state-of-the-art administration block, and other facilities including classrooms, libraries, and laboratories.

UHAS is running 22 undergraduate programmes and 14 postgraduate courses and using infrastructure way below the required standard, that elicited President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to cut the sod for the second phase project in September 2021.

The Government also provided counterpart funding of US$6 million for ancillary works.

Justice Mr Jones Mawulorm Dotse, the Chairman of the University Council, while opening the second session of the Eighth UHAS Congregation, announced the near completion of the project, and was hopeful it would be handed over in June 2024 as scheduled.

He expressed gratitude to the Republic of China for the as
sistance, and to the Government of Ghana for the counterpart funding, while appealing for the needed releases to enable utilities such as water and electricity extension to the school.

Professor Lydia Aziato, the Vice Chancellor, drew attention to other physical infrastructure projects that stalled at the various campuses, including the laboratory complex and the buildings for the School of Public Health at Hohoe.

She reminded the Government of the bad nature of the main campus roads, for which construction had been on hold for some time now, and said it continued to challenge access to the University and frustrated students and lecturers.

A total 478 graduated at the second ceremony – the majority being sandwich and postgraduates, bringing to 1,816 that passed out at the Eighth Congregation.

The Vice Chancellor said the University’s 12-year existence had added more than 8,000 professionals to the health workforce, and that management remained committed to growing its essence.

She said the university emb
arks on the practical nature of health training as a prime institution in the West African sub-region, and appealed for support from all quarters in sustaining the mandate.

The Eighth edition of the John Evans Attah Mills Memorial Leadership Lecture series, instituted to ‘immortalise’ the late President, was held the day prior, and had Rev. Mrs Joyce Aryee as speaker.

Professor Mills established the UHAS by an Act of Parliament (Act 828 in December, 2011) and operationalised in September 2012, with 154 students.

It is envisioned to become a pre-eminent research and practically oriented health educational institution dedicated to community service.

The main campus, including the central administration, is in Ho with a second campus located in Hohoe.?

Professor Fred Newton Binka became the foundational Vice Chancellor of UHAS and served in that capacity until July 2016, when he was succeeded by Professor John Gyapong.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Upper West Region tops in NHIS population coverage

The Upper West Region tops all the 16 regions in the 2023 National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) population coverage, Mr Samuel Lobber Lekamwe, the Acting Upper West Regional Director of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), has announced.

He said 772,941 people, representing 81.9 per cent of the 943,448 projected population of the region, were covered by the NHIS within the year under review against its 81 per cent coverage recorded in 2022.

Mr Lekamwe added that the region remained the lead region in the country in Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in membership coverage.

He said the region achieved 772,941 of its target of 856,429 for 2023, representing 90.3 per cent.

Mr Lekamwe announced this in Wa at the weekend during the Authority’s 2023 end-of-year performance review meeting held on the theme: ‘Eighty Per cent Population Coverage in All Districts – The New Targeting Metric’.

The Bono Region came second with coverage of 1,013,392 out of a total population of 1,269,837, representing 79.8 p
er cent while the Ahafo Region came third with NHIS coverage of 435,898 out of a population of 580,589, representing 75.1 per cent coverage.

For the district coverage, Wa Municipality came first by achieving 97 per cent of its 2023 annual target of 174,019, followed by Wa East District which achieved 96 per cent of its 72,216 target, while the Lawra Municipality achieved 77 per cent of its target of 90,918 falling at the bottom of the chart.

Mr Lekamwe commended the staff of the Wa Municipality and other good-performing districts for their part in ensuring the region sustained its gains in the NHIS coverage.

The NHIA Regional Director said 31 per cent of the total membership renewals of the scheme were through mobile renewals.

‘That means if the NHIA was not innovative, and with the kind of staffing situation we have, 31 per cent of the members we have today would not have been our members’, Mr Lekamwe explained.

He encouraged the public to take advantage of the *929# mobile renewal platform and the NHIA
mobile application to renew or register to benefit from the NHIS package.

He indicated that the NHIS prioritises the vulnerable groups in society by ensuring that such groups of people are registered for free.

He said 280, 182 of such people were registered within the year under review.

Mr Lekamwe indicated that the region had set for itself a target of 886,005 membership coverage for 2024, representing 91.8 per cent of the region’s population.

He explained that they would enhance their strategies to achieve their membership targets, intensify quarterly outreach programmes, intensify public education on e-platforms and enhance institutional registrations among others in 2024.

He said illegal fee charges by accredited health service providers was eroding member confidence, poor mobile networks affecting mobile registration and renewal, and poor road networks affecting community visitations and inadequate vehicles, among others, were some challenges affecting the work of the Authority.

Mr Titus Sorey, the
NHIA Northern Belt Director, commended the Upper West Regional office of the Authority for the success chalked and standing tall not only within the Belt but the country at large.

He assured the NHIA Regional Director and his team that the challenges confronting them would be attended to accordingly.

Mr Sorey urged the staff of the authority to increase their public education to empower the members of the scheme to challenge illegal charges at NHIA-accredited facilities.

‘Let’s inform our people, let them know what is covered and what is not covered because we know we cover about 95 per cent of the conditions.

How can you say this condition is covered but the medicine for it is not covered, what are you treating, it doesn’t just add up to me’, he said.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Water Resources Commission advocates transboundary cooperation for global water security

Dr Joachim Ayiiwe Abungba, the Black Volta Basin Head, Water Resources Commission (WRC), has advocated transboundary cooperation between countries and communities for global water security.

He made the call during the commemoration of the World Water Day at Tumu at the weekend.

The event served as a platform for dialogue and collaboration, reinforcing the collective resolve to leverage water as a catalyst for community peace, prosperity, and sustainable development.

He spoke on the theme: ‘Leveraging Water for Peace,’ and stressed the pivotal role of collaborative efforts in mitigating water-related conflicts and fostering sustainable development.

‘Water has the power to start conflict or bring about peace. Tensions between communities and (between) nations can arise when there is a lack of water, if it is contaminated, or people have uneven or no access to it,’ he noted.

‘More than three billion people worldwide depend on water that crosses national borders, hence the need for international cooperation
among countries and communities.’

Dr Abungba indicated that as the world grappled with mounting water challenges, the call for enhanced transboundary cooperation and community-led initiatives emerged as a beacon of hope for achieving water security and fostering global harmony.

He reiterated the WRC’s commitment to fostering transboundary cooperation, particularly in the Black Volta Basin.

The Commission is the national focal institution facilitating dialogues towards establishing permanent mechanisms for transboundary water resources management.

Mr Fuseini Yakubu Batong, the Sissala East Municipal Chief Executive, said: ‘Water can spark and intensify conflict when access is denied and usage unfairly shared.’

He recognised the support of various stakeholders in enhancing access to potable water within the municipality.

The Fire Service, Community Water Systems, Sachet Water Producers’ Association, Sissala East Agricultural Directorate, Immigration Officials and community representatives among other stak
eholders participated.

Source: Ghana News Agency