Tribute To Mr. J R P Amissah-Arthur: Ghana Has Lost An Educational Compass

By Maxwell Okamafo Asamani Addo, Old student Odasco, Nananom
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Proverbs 22:6 - 'Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it'.

Papa you have fought a good fight....
The Late 'J R P Amissah-Arthur who passed at 92 on Wednesday 21st May 2014 has fought a good fight and has run the full course of the race as far as Education in Ghana is concerned.

His soul would be delighted that what he sought to achieve in life was accomplished - achievement evidenced by the number of persons who understudied him, following very much in his path a an educationist and a father.

Notably his children Untie Josephine , Auntie Effe.,Mr kwesi Bekoe Amissah Arthur ,Mr. Jabesh Amissah-Arthur, ,Her ladyship Cecilia Sowah and all other students he shepherded as a headmaster and a father.

His contribution to the educational development of this country is inscribed on marble, inerasable and available for generations yet unborn to admire

Late J R P Amissah-Arthur was a role model who inspired many to rethink their nonchalance about education at a time when it was not fashionable and attractive pastime to many, especially among parents.

I feel reinvigorated together with other old students of Oda Secondary School when the names of Mr. J R P Amissah-Arthur and the wife Untie Effe are mentioned in the academic history of Oda secondary school and beyond.

He was one of the trail blazers who had impacted positively on the lives of many internally and beyond the shores of Ghana, being an educationist and a father, who was the second and longest serving headmaster of Oda Secondary school , my alma mater .

He helped fulfilled the purpose for which Odasco was established in September, 1960, with the Motto Knowledge Truth and Service with the aim at building a well-disciplined staff, create a serene academic atmosphere for students to have excellent results, live morally upright lives and contribute meaningfully to the development of the Ghana.

Just some few months asgo the presidential press corps of which I am a proud member had the opportunity to join the Vice President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur and four of his siblings at the school's 54th Anniversary, and Speech and Prize-Giving Day celebration of Oda Senior High School, where this unsung hero was decorated as a founding headmaster.

The celebration also coincided with the launch of the 'J R P Amissah-Arthur Award for Leadership', in recognition of the of the principles of discipline, commitment, truth and service that Mr Amisssah-Arthur, the father of the Vice President, exhibited during his 17 years of service to the school.

The Award was made up of a commemorative plaque, and an undisclosed amount of money which would be awarded yearly.

The Day also witnessed the unveiling of a bust of Mr J R P Amissah-Arthur. It told a story of how who in September, 1961, Mr. Jabish Richmond Amissah-Arthur, then at Aggrey Memorial School, Cape Coast, was recommended and appointed Headmaster of Oda Secondary School, where he worked till December, 1977.

When word spread about the demise of Mr J R P Amissah-Arthur, I was soaked in disbelief because we recently celebrated him. My teachers during my days told me , JRP he was as affectionately called was an example of a good and disciplined headmaster who motivated the teachers, staff and students, encouraging them to work in concert for a common goal.

Excellence was his hallmark. The late Amissah Arthurs leadership was about role modeling students with for accomplishment and had common personality traits of a good headmaster pivoted on Trustworthy, Confidence, Intuition and proactiveness

Speaking to some of the old student who were with him as a the headmaster of Odasco , they described him as an iconic figure.

They were unequivocal in their verdict of this great man. The resounding chorus was that Odasco has lost a father, describing him as a Successful Headmaster who earned the respect and trust of his staff, students and parents.

He is resting in the bosom of his Maker - a transition which makes amplifies the dictum 'to dust thou shall return'. Man proposes but his Maker disposes.

He had served well. He has served his nation and humanity so lets celebrate him

J R P Amissah-Arthur rest in peace, Papa fare thee well

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