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10.11.2004 Regional News

GHABA holds first Mass graduation

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Accra, Nov.10, GNA - Hairdressers and beauticians were on Wednesday asked to maintain good hygiene to help prevent the spread of infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS.

Mrs. Gladys Asmah, Minister of Women and Children Affairs (MOWAC), said in the face of HIV/AIDS there was the need for hairdressers to constantly sterilize their tools to prevent the spread of the disease. Mrs Asmah was addressing the first mass graduation of the Greater Accra branch of the Ghana hairdressers and Beauticians Association (GHABA where 320 graduate apprentices passed out after going through a two-year course in cosmetology, good glooming, hair anatomy, braiding and scalp treatment.

Mrs. Asmah said the need to encourage women to acquire skills was paramount to ensuring socio-economic development of the nation. "MOWAC has therefore, made skill training and career development a priority to help reduce poverty among women and protect their rights," she said.

She encouraged the women to put their resources together to be able to access more loans for the expansion of their businesses. Mrs. Asmah further called on the executives of GHABA to get in touch with her ministry for closer collaboration in designing other training programmes and assistances to help the graduates set up their own businesses.

Mrs. Joyce Appiah, National President, GHABA, said the absence of a legal backing to the profession had led to the springing up of mushroom salons countrywide that provide unprofessional services to clients. She stated that with the institution of a curriculum for hairdressing, students would have the opportunity of further skill training and security of a recognised certificate from the National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) before operating their businesses.

Mrs. Appiah called on all hairdressers to join the association and enrol their apprentices to enable them have the requisite training to enhance professionalism.

She said GHABA aims at ensuring the standardisation of ethics to conform to international standards, "therefore we will collaborate with all stake holders to design other training programmes for our members." She appealed to the Ghana Standards Board and the Food and Drugs Board to intensify checks on hair products to promote quality. Mrs. Christiana Okine, Greater Accra Regional President, GHABA, urged the grandaunts to be active and responsible in dealing with the chemicals, adding, "any irresponsible action on your part can adversely affect both your client and the reputation of the association." She appealed to the Ministry of Manpower and Employment (MME) to assist the graduates to settle down and establish their own businesses. The graduates were awarded with certificates whilst prizes were also awarded for punctuality, over-all best, best in theory as well as in practicals.

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