Elmina, Jan 18, GNA - Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso, a Research Fellow at the University of Ghana, has appealed to African scholars and professionals to use their academic and professional qualifications to improve conditions on the continent.
''Mere acquisition of chains of degrees or certificates means nothing if they cannot be used for the benefit of society," he said Dr Antwi-Danso said this at the opening of a five-day 'West Africa Cohort Building Meeting' for the 2004/2005 fellows-elect of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Programme (IFP) on Monday.
The Association of African Universities (AAU) and the IFP are organising the programme under the theme "Leadership in a Globalised World".
Forty fellows-elect are attending the programme from IFP sites in Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal and IFP is sponsoring them to pursue degree programmes overseas.
Dr Antwi-Danso said it was important for Africa to have a new kind of leadership that would enable the continent to move ahead in tune with global challenges.
''It is therefore important these fellow-elect are provided with the requisite skills to propel their countries forward. Your worth will be measured by how well you will use the knowledge you will acquire.'' Prof Paschal MIHYO, the Director of Research and Programmes of the AAU, said the meeting was to facilitate the sharing of knowledge and experiences.
Dr Aba Nwachuku of Pathfinder International, Nigeria, said the 40 were chosen for exhibiting strong leadership qualities and commitment to the development of their countries.