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25.07.2005 Regional News

Akuafo Hall launches Golden Jubilee


Accra, July 25, GNA - The Akuafo Hall of the University of Ghana, Legon on Monday launched an endowment fund in aid of the of the Hall's poor and needy students as part of activities marking the launch of it's golden jubilee celebration.

The Minister of Energy and an Alumnus of the Hall, Professor Mike Ocquaye who launched both the fund and anniversary, made the first donation of five million cedis and called on other Alumni to contribute towards the fund.

Prof Ocquaye said the Hall known as the "Hall of Excellence" was blessed with a number of illustrious sons and daughters in position of honour including the Executive, the Legislature, Judiciary, Journalism and Business, who could assist in lifting its image above other halls at the University.

"People who have benefited from the Hall should contribute towards this endowment fund to help the poor and needy that are determined to attain a university degree," he said, adding: "We need to also contribute towards the renovation and expansion of the Hall facilities too".

The anniversary is being celebrated under the theme: "Akuafo Hall, 50 Years Contribution to the Development of Ghana." Prof Ocquaye appealed to Ghanaians to continue to honour farmers through whose toils and sweat the University was built. Prof Kwesi Yankah, Dean of the Faculty of Arts, who deputized for the Acting Vice Chancellor Professor C. N. B. Tagoe, said Akuafo Hall ranged among the highest halls if the University was to draw a league table in terms of discipline, academic work and extra curriculum activities.

Reiterating the efforts of farmers towards the establishment of the university, he said: "Dr J.B Danquah, who advocated for the establishment of a University for Gold Coast had to mobilize fund from farmers to get the University established. "This humble contribution of the farmers had enabled many students to attain university education," he said, adding that the postage of students to rural areas after their programmes was just a way of acknowledging the farmers' contribution and the need for students to reciprocate such efforts.

Prof. Yankah said the residential system was a vital aspect of university education, which unfortunately the University of Ghana was no longer in a position to handle adequately and urged the Alumni to contribute their quota in helping solve the residential problem. Prof Yankah proposed that farmers, who distinguished themselves in their chosen field, could be awarded honorary doctorate degrees. Prof. George Ankra-Badu, Chairman, Planning Committee, said the anniversary celebration would be used to solicit funds for the Hall as well as to forge unity among all members.

Activities for the celebration include public awareness programmes, Inter-hall competitions, lectures, symposia and a dinner dance. The Revered Dr Cephas Narh Omenyo, Hall Master, who gave the history of the Hall, said it was established in October 1955 as the second hall at the Legon site with an initial student intake of 150. The official number now is 1,500. 25 July 05