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19.11.2009 Education

Ghana secures Zain African challenge ticket …As four Universities qualify for Uganda

By Charles Takyi - Boadu - Ghanaian Chronicle
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Four of the country's Universities have managed to book a place to compete in the much-publicised 'Zain African Challenge', an intellectual battle among African university student, The universities include the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Valley View University and University of Development Studies, which advanced to the finals for the second time.

University of Ghana was the only new entrant that joined the other three contesting universities, to make it a total of four Ghanaian universities representing Ghana at the Zain Africa Challenge International Championship & Festival, which is slated for Kampala-Uganda, in the year 2010.

The battle was closely fought in this double knockout competition to form the National Team that will represent Ghana. Participating schools and the students displayed a high sense of intellectual prowess during Ghana's second edition of the Zain Africa Challenge held at the La Palm Royal Beach Hotel, with seven of the country's finest universities battling it out for a chance to compete with other qualifying African Universities in the final tournament. 

The Zain Africa Challenge is the first ever televised Pan African academic competition among students competing from registered universities within Africa. Participating countries include Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

According to Zain, the objective of this initiative is to develop the intellect of Africa's youth and to highlight the excellent educational opportunities that African Universities offer to its citizens. All the contenders are quizzed in a fast paced environment that leaves no room for error.

The telecommunications company will be awarding US $50,000 to the winning University and US $5,000 to the contestants, which is part of Zain's 1,000,000 USD total investments in cash, educational grants and teaching materials.

The questions in the fast-paced quiz programme cover a wide range of topical areas including: History, Science, African culture, Geography, Literature, Music and Current affairs. Last year, the University of Cape Coast made it to the finals but narrowly missed the boat for next year's event.

The University of Mines, Tarkwa, and University of Education, Winneba were the other universities who could not qualify, despite impressive performances. Comments from the audience confirmed that there has been an improvement of the contestants' performances.

Zain Africa Challenge is one of the CSR initiatives of the Zain Group. Education of the youth of any nation is paramount to the development of the country. Zain is focusing on education, arts and culture and as such has pledged to help develop the minds of the youth through non-conventional but fun activities, events and programmes.

In an opening statement at the beginning of the tournament, the Manager for Corporate Communications and External Affairs, Carmen Bruce-Annan stated, “Zain is committed to boosting the quality of education in Ghana. This competition is established to sharpen the brain power and intellect of our students”.

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