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14.02.2005 General News

Make youth employment a priority - Dan Lartey to JAK

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Offinso (Ash), Feb 14, GNA- Mr Dan Lartey, Leader of the Great Consolidated Popular Party (GCPP), has asked the Kufuor administration to use his second term in office to critical address the challenge of making the youth to become more productive.

"President Kufuor enjoys a lot of goodwill among Ghanaians and this he must reciprocate by ensuring quality transformation of their lives through job openings particularly for the youth," he said at the 11th joint graduation ceremony of the Offinso, Nkenkansu and Gyankufa training and rehabilitation centres for the Physically Disabled at Offinso on Sunday.

Forty (40) trainees from the three centres who underwent vocational skills training in carpentry, leatherworks, shoe making, dressmaking, hairdressing, batik and tie and dye, were presented with basic tools and equipment and one million cedis each as a start up capital.

Mr Lartey lauded the President's Special Initiative (PSI) on Cassava, describing it as a step in the right direction.

He, however, suggested the need for radical shift from the pilot phase to large-scale operation to enable the PSI to offer employment to many people.

The GCPP leader said he was particularly happy about efforts being made to assist the physically handicapped to acquire trades that would make them economically self-supporting, noting that, it was in line with his political philosophy of "domestication".

Dr Kofi Konadu Apraku, Member of Parliament for Offinso North, said in a speech read on his behalf that it was unfortunate that most Ghanaians tend to ignore the potentials of the physically challenged. "It is a fact that these potentials can be harnessed for societal development given the necessary education and training. Since disability is not inability, society must change its negative attitude towards the people with disabilities."

Dr Apraku, suggested the need to include Information, Communication and Technology in future courses to bring trainees in line with the realities of globalisation.

Mr Joseph Yaw Oduro, Offinso District Chief Executive, gave the assurance that the District Assembly would do everything possible to sustain the running of the centres.

Mr Barima Antwi, Field Director of the three centres, said 300 physically disabled persons had been trained so far.

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