The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, has tasked the Graphic Communications Group Limited to instil the can-do spirit in the youth of the country in order to build a prosperous Ghana.
"The partnership I am looking out for is a prosperous Ghana where everyone believes that everything is possible, and that is the kind of attitude we want our children to have, and through your pages, they can have that,” he told the Managing Director of the GCGL, Mr Ato Afful, when he led a team from the GCGL to pay a courtesy call on the minister in his office at the Ministries in Accra.
The management of the GCGL was at the ministry to congratulate the minister on his elevation from a deputy minister to a substantive minister and his successful re-election as a Member of Parliament (MP).
The team, which also comprised the Editor of the Junior Graphic, Ms Kate Baaba Hudson; Adverts Manager, Mr George Danso; and the Corporate Communication Manager, Mr Emmanuel Arthur, was also at the ministry to seek support and partnership to get schools and educational institutions to subscribe to the newspapers of the company, particularly the Junior Graphic.
Dr Adutwum pledged the ministry’s readiness to subscribe to the Daily Graphic, and also to facilitate the subscription of the Junior Graphic to senior and junior high and basic schools.
He further pledged to support the company by getting others to start subscribing to the newspapers, and to partner the company in its other business modules.
Dr Adutwum proposed to have the “Minister’s Corner” as his personal column in the Junior Graphic to share motivational and academic materials that could engage the children.
“We want to use this to also help with the hidden curriculum where the messages are buried in stories to change the mindset of the students to form their culture and their values,” the minister explained.
He called for a new form of the folkloric Ananse story that talked about empowerment, “and not the Ananse that wants to steal all the wisdom in the world.
“I do not want an Ananse who fakes his death to steal all the farms. We should not encourage an Ananse who cheats people, and so we need a kind of a different set of storytelling,” Dr Adutwum stated.
He proposed to the Editor of the Junior Graphic to create a weekly column in the newspaper where heroes, particularly from Ghana and Africa, shared experiences to enable the children to learn from their exploits.
“The first person that readily comes to mind is Mr Kofi Annan, and I will tell you why. I think every child in Ghana should know the story of Mr Kofi Annan because it is about empowerment, and so whether the child is from Walewale or Zabzugu or Atubam, he will be able to say that a Ghanaian was almost like the President of the world and so I can also do it. That should be part of the hidden curriculum,” Dr Adutwum stated.
He explained that such stories could inspire the children to aspire to reach higher heights, and charged the GCGL to use its range of newspapers to tell the youth to dream the Ghanaian dream to change their mindset to get them “to understand that everything is possible”.
Purpose of visit
Mr Afful expressed gratitude to the minister for the reception and the depth of knowledge he shared on the possible partnerships with GCGL.
“Anytime I sit down and listen to you, I always feel that this country is really privileged to have somebody of your standing and experience to be in charge of this ministry,” and added that he believed the minister would use his wealth of expertise to push education to a higher notch.
Mr Afful said the Daily Graphic had a critical role to play in the contemporary history of the country.
“As a 70-year-old organisation, we have been here, and we have documented and archived all of the developments that this country has gone through over the last 70 years.”
Mr Afful also sought the minister’s endorsement of the annual Junior Graphic Essay Competition.
“So, we will be grateful if you will grant this exercise that we do at the national level, a certain degree of support and endorsement to enable it to derive confidence in the market place so that parents are assured that what is coming out to them is not just anything that a few people have sat at an editorial conference and said they are going to do,” he said.
Mr Afful further explained that the Junior Graphic was a highly subsidised paper to ensure that it gained the penetration that it required.
He, therefore, implored the minister to use his office to court some of the international partners to support the company to deliver for the young people in society.