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10.11.2008 Business & Finance

Election Tension Affecting Business

By Kwadwo B. Donkor -

The chairman of the Council of the University of Ghana, Legon,  Anthony Oteng-Gyasi, has said the threat of violence and refusal to accept the result of the forthcoming election by some political parties, is affecting business in the country.

Compared to the same period last year, he said business had started declining, a situation he attributed to the decline in investor confidence, adding: “The threat of violence and insinuation will not help anyone”.

Mr. Oteng-Gyasi, who is also the  President of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), was speaking at the 60th congregation of the university, Legon, last Saturday.

He said both local and foreign investors are getting worried about the threat of violence and therefore reluctant to invest in the economy due to the seeming uncertainty of the poll and its aftermath.

He, therefore, advised Ghanaians, particularly politicians, to be guided by the recent election in the US and the conduct of the losing party and do same to safeguard the peace of the country.

“The most important thing is to bring finality in the whole process such that at the end of the day, there would be a winner.  This country must go on, it is a 'yes we can' for Ghana too.”

In his report, the Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Clifford Nii Boi Tagoe, said the recent discovery of oil in the country had presented opportunities to the university to contribute to the human resource development and technical resources for the emerging petroleum sector.

As a result, he said, the university recently held a summit that brought together the key public and private sector institutions to discuss the human resource needs of the sector and to “map out strategies for a university-industry partnership.”

Prof. Tagoe said the Faculty of Engineering Sciences had been discussing with the Oil and Gas Development Corporation of Ghana to mount a common programme that “would train professionals to acquire the requisite skills needed for project management in the oil and petroleum sectors.

He said the university was considering introducing other programmes such as geophysics, petroleum geology, petroleum law, petroleum economics, environmental science and petroleum business.

He explained that university education was to train critical minds and “therefore whatever programme is offered at the university is important”.

 “Whether we are lawyers, engineers, archeologists, economists, medical doctors, sociologists, political scientists, all have roles to play in society,” he observed.

A total of 1,988 students from the School of Research and Graduate Studies, College of Agriculture and Consumer Sciences, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Engineering Sciences made up of 161 diplomates, 1,395 undergraduates and 432 post-graduates including 12 PhD students received their certificates.