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Drop big vocabularies, support artisans - Addo Kufuor technical university dons

BY: Kwadwo Baffoe Donkor
 Vice-President Bawumia congratulating Dr Kwame Addo Kufuor at the investiture
Vice-President Bawumia congratulating Dr Kwame Addo Kufuor at the investiture

The Chancellor of the Kumasi Technical University (KsTU), Dr Kwame Addo Kufuor, has entreated lecturers of the university to support artisans at the Suame industrial enclave to develop technologies to support the industrialisation of the country.

In doing so, he asked them to drop their academic degrees and big vocabularies and come to the level of the artisans in order to get their collaboration.

He said experience had shown that it was easier to get the collaboration of people when they had a sense of belonging, hence the need for the lecturers to rather make the approach.

“If you speak all the big English, there is no way they will be willing to collaborate. However, if you go to them speaking the local language and explain things to them, they will listen to appreciate what you are telling them,” he said.

This is because discussing mechanical problems in the local languages with the artisans will lead to finding solutions and enhancing performance.

Dr Kufuor made the call during his investiture as the first Chancellor of KsTU in Kumasi last Friday (September 30).


Ceremony

First of its kind, the ceremony was quite a colourful one and attracted a host of dignitaries as well as the family of the chancellor.

The dignitaries included the Guest of Honour, Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, former president John Agyekum Kufuor, who is an elder brother of the Chancellor, former Speaker of Parliament, Prof Mike Oquaye, Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast, Sir Sam Jonah, the Ashanti Regional Minister, Simeon Osei-Mensah, and Apagyahene Oheneba Owusu Afriyie IV, the family head of the new Chancellor.

Also present were Mrs Addo Kufuor and their two sons, as well as some senior lecturers of the KsTU.

Investment

In his address, Vice-President Bawumia paid glowing tribute to the chancellor, who he said had paid his dues to the nation through his service in the public sector.

“The university could not have picked a worthier leader than you.

“Your worth of experience as Board Chairman of Suame Magazine Industrial Development Organisation (SMIDO) indicate your in-depth knowledge and already established interest in Vocational and Technical Education,” he said.

He said it was apt that the first chancellor of the university was a son of the land of Ashanti Kingdom who has been put in good stead to help propel the university onto greater heights to achieve world-class university status.”

Role

Dr Kufuor said the call to be a Chancellor was an opportunity to help develop the young university students into world class talents in order to serve Ghana and raise the image of Africa on the world stage.

He also acknowledged that his new role would require him to lead the university and provide the necessary support and assistance to the council, faculties and administration to transform KsTU to one of the “topmost institutions for information and communication development and training in Ghana and beyond.

“I have confidence in the ability, creativity and ingenuity of the Ghanaian youth.

“It is my firm belief that with the right type of education and training, our young people can create and achieve whatever their counterparts have attained anywhere in the world,” he said.

Collaboration

To achieve this, the KsTU Chancellor called for more collaboration among the academia, industry and agriculture to drive industry and practical work experience for students.

He thus advised KsTU to reach out to share knowledge of mutual value with local senior institutions like the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and also other universities in the country.

Such collaboration, he explained, would also ensure that “graduating students come out of the university with considerable exposure to the workplace and the confidence to work in such an environment.”

Appreciation

He was grateful to the university governing council for selecting him as a chancellor and pledged to bring his experience and expertise in academia and administration to bear during his reign.