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22.12.2004 Regional News

Sunyani Poly holds matriculation ceremony

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Sunyani (B/A) Dec. 22, GNA - The 9th matriculation ceremony of the Sunyani Polytechnic (S Poly) has been held at Sunyani with plead to students to study hard since education and skill training are the commanding heights of the modern global economy.

Dr. Kwasi Nsiah-Gyabaah, Principal of S poly who gave the advice explained that no society could develop without education, adding that nations that neglect competency-based training or refuse to invest in technical, vocational and polytechnic education risk being poor deprived and marginalized.

He noted that the lip-service attitude and inadequate attention to technical, vocational and polytechnic education had seriously undermined the socio-economic development of the country eroding the gains of many government development initiatives.

He recalled that gone were the days when eminent economist such as Adam Smith and Todaro measured a nation's wealth by its available natural resources including gold, diamond, manganese and abundant agricultural land adding "In this Computer and Information Technology age, it is human capital that determines the wealth of nations and quality of life of their people".

He therefore, implored students to concentrate on their studies to enable them to achieve their academic laurels.

Polytechnic education provides a broad base of knowledge and an array of technical and professional skills that is needed for sustainable national development.

Dr. Nsiah-Gyabaah appealed to the government to give a mandate to Conference of Polytechnic Principals (COPP) and the Polytechnic Council Chairmen to start negotiations on salaries, allowances and conditions of service of the unionised staff in polytechnics since qualified and experience lecturers were leaving to take up appointments with universities and other public organizations as a results of poor salaries.

He urged to the government to either establish a new technical institute or turned one of Twene Amanfo and Nkoranza Technical schools into a fully-fledged technical school to feed the polytechnic so that programmes offered there would be more technical oriented. The Principal announced that an endowment fund has been launched at the school with a target of twenty billion cedis to generate money to finance projects in the polytechnic and however appealed to Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), chiefs and business entities to contribute generously to the fund.

Dr. Nsiah-Gyabaah said although the polytechnic had put in place all that is needed to start the agricultural programme in the past three years, the policy had not yielded any fruitful results. He appealed to the National Council for tertiary Education and the National Accreditation Board to facilitate the introduction of Higher National Diploma (HND) General Agriculture programme in the polytechnic.

Speaking on HIV/AIDS pandemic he said the disease is real and spreading like wildfire and advised the students to abstain from pre-marital sex adding: "To those who cannot abstain, please wear your protective cover-condom".

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