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23.01.2004 General News

Kufuor inaugurates Burma Camp Computer Centre

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Accra, Jan. 24, GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor on Friday called for collaboration between the Burma Camp Computer Centre and the Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in Information Communication Technology (ICT) to explore new ways of designing training programmes.

He said such collaboration would strategically fit the work environment, entrepreneurship, research, and management skills and enhanced productivity plans.

President Kufuor made the call when he unveiled the plague to inaugurate the three point three (3.3) billion cedis Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) Burma Camp Computer centre at Burma Camp in Accra.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) initiated the Computer Centre in June 2001 in an effort to promote computer literacy and education in the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF). The Centre will house 135 computers with competent resource persons to train the soldiers.

The Centre also has an Internet caf=E9 and provides a convenient environment for ancillary services, such as the Burma Camp branches of the Ghana Commercial Bank and the State Insurance Company, a pharmacy, a bookshop and a cafeteria.

President Kufuor expressed appreciation that an opportunity had been created for officers, men, women and employees in the defence sector to avail themselves of computer training.

He said modern military and warfare were technology driven and supported by men and women with appropriate competencies, adding, "Ghana therefore, must develop the relevant human capacity for its military".

President Kufuor noted that the relevance of such training becomes clearer, viewed within the context of the United Nations, and the ECOWAS, both of which have Ghanaian soldiers serving in their peace programmes, even at the highest levels.

He said such international organizations offered immense opportunities to persons with the requisite training, which necessarily involves the deployment of ICT in one form or the other.

President Kufuor gave the assurance that government was determined to promote the use of ICT to accelerate national development and has taken various steps, including the formulation of ICT-led socio-economic development Plan, and the passing of the National Communications Bill to prepare the field for takeoff.

He said if Ghana were able to sufficiently develop, use, exploit and sell information, knowledge and technology, the country would be in the position to accelerate its socio-economic development process and gain global competitiveness and improve the well-being of the people.

President Kufuor said that it is in realization of the mastery of ICT as an indispensable development tool, that government is encouraging the establishment of centres for ICT education delivery and business empowerment.

He reminded the GAF the management of the Centre to maintain the equipment and structure in order to derive benefits from the facility.

Dr. Kwame Addo Kufuor, the Minister of Defence said the objective of the GAF was to enhance the level of military professionalism, and consequently its ability to impact positively, especially in protecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country.

He said the availability of such a facility in the camp would enhance efficiency and greater professionalism in the armed forces.

The Minister expressed the hope that the Centre would facilitate the spread of computer literacy among the service persons and the civilian employees of the Ministry and improve communications between the various Garrisons in the country and agencies abroad.

He said the Centre, which is operating initially with 20 computers, would offer free ICT training to all service personnel and the civilian employees of the MOD.

Dr Addo Kufuor said the rents that would be collected from the ancillary services using the ground floor of the facility would help reduce the operational cost of the centre, adding that the only facility at the Centre that would attract fess would be the internet caf=E9.

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