President John Agyekum Kufuor, on Wednesday said the appointment of Professor Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, as the first female Vice-Chancellor of a public University in Ghana, was victory for women in the country, because she has added to the list of women who had taken up responsible positions on merit.
He expressed the hope that her achievement would encourage the younger generation of women to live up to the tasks and avail themselves of the opportunities the country was offering them in terms of education to occupy more top positions.
The President said these in a speech read on his behalf by Papa Owusu Ankomah, Minister for Trade, Industry and President's Special Initiative, at a ceremony to induct Prof Opoku-Agyemang into office as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast (UCC), in Cape Coast.
President Kufuor reiterated that his administration set up a Women and Children's Affairs Ministry to enhance the empowerment of women and was happy that since then, more women have taken up top positions in the country.
The Chancellor of the UCC, Dr (Sir) Sam Jonah who inducted Prof. Opoku-Agyemang into office, described her as a “courageous and determined female who never accepted the status quo, but had worked hard and passed through the mill to attain her present position”.
The Chancellor said he was confident that Prof. Opoku-Agyemang would follow the path charted by her predecessor, and strive to enhance the development of the University.
Prof. Opoku-Agyemang, said that the time had come for the UCC to explore its potential of being uniquely located within easy reach of historical sites in the region, like Elmina and Kromantsi.
She said these locations, will thematically link up with other sites in the country to attract Africans in the Diaspora through the creation of an African Diaspora village at the UCC, to mobilize the intellectual and technical expertise of those in the Diaspora to enrich the UCC, “to satisfy a fundamental human quest while raising funds”.
According to Prof Opoku-Agyemang, strategies towards achieving this, would include creating a resource centre that would serve as a hub for research and teaching of the African Diaspora, a museum to showcase the achievements of Ghanaians and other Africans on the continent and in the Diaspora “as a means of self-worth.”
She expressed gratitude for the “unique” opportunity being offered her to serve the University and the country and called on Ghanaians to support her to excel.
The former Vice-Chancellor, Rev. Prof. Obeng, pledged to continue to offer advice to the UCC authorities.
The new Vice-Chancellor, the eighth to be appointed since the inception of the University of Cape Coast (UCC), who would be 57 years old next November, and holds a PhD, a BA (Honors) in French from the University of Dakar, and a Diploma in Education from the UCC takes over from Reverend Professor Emmanuel Adow Obeng, whose seven year-term in office as Vice Chancellor of UCC ended last Wednesday.
The new Vice-Chancellor has several publications to her credit and has received a number of awards, and held many positions at the UCC, including the Dean of Graduate Studies.
Prof. Opoku-Agyemang, started her basic education at the Komenda Local Authority primary, Saint Peter's Anglican at Koforidua and the Aburi Girls' Boarding schools then to the Wesley Girls' High School where she obtained both the Ordinary and Advanced level certificates.
Also inducted into office, was Mr Isaac Ohene, 56, the new and 11th Registrar of UCC, who succeeds Mr Samuel Kofi Ohene, who has retired.