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12.11.2004 Regional News

NGO opens vocational training centre

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Gbi-Atabu (V/R), Nov 12, GNA - Mr Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, the Minister of Education, Youth and Sports, has said the Presidential Special Initiatives (PSIs) and other interventions being pursued by the government were measures at bridging the rural-urban imbalance. He therefore called on Ghanaians to embrace these concepts to set the stage for the promotion of equity, social justice and accelerated rural development.

Mr Baah-Wiredu said this in an address read for him on Thursday at the commissioning of a Wood and Metal Works Vocational Training Centre at Gbi-Atabu near Hohoe.

It was opened through the efforts of the Christian Rural Aid Network (CRAN), a non-governmental organisation (NGO), Atabu Self-Help Association (ASHA) and funded by the German African Co-operative Development Association-DAZ Germany, at the cost of over 250 million cedis.

Mr Baah-Wiredu called for more networking and partnership between NGOs and the district assemblies to realise the objectives of the PSIs. He appealed to the youth to take interest in acquiring vocational and entrepreneurial skill training.

Mr Henry Baye, Board Chairman of CRAN, appealed to the government to make available budgetary allocation to augment the efforts of local NGOs like CRAN that are into poverty alleviation, micro-financing and social development ventures.

He also appealed to the government to eliminate import duties on goods imported by such NGOs that are meant for development. ''These support schemes would facilitate the activities of such organisations to reach out efficiently to the rural poor.'' Mr Baye said more than six billion cedis loan has been disbursed to over 8,000 clients in the Central, Western and the Volta regions. Mr James K. Dogbe, the Hohoe District Chief Executive, pledged the assembly's readiness to collaborate with the Institute and urged parents to prompt their children to enrol in the school.

Mr Hinrich Kuessner, Chairman of DAZ who led a six-man delegation from Germany, said two instructors would soon be sent to Germany to undertake further tuition in craftsmanship.

Togbe Adzofuwusu, Chief of Gbi-Atabu, said already cordial relations among the community, CRAN and DAZ would further be strengthened to benefit all stakeholders. 12 Nov. 04

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