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16.12.2005 Regional News

Agbogbomefia builds school block for JSS

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Ho, Dec. 16, GNA-A two-storey ultramodern classroom block built by Togbe Afede XIV, Agbogbomefia of the Asogli State for the Roman Catholic Junior Secondary School (JSS) at Bankoe was on Tuesday comed in Ho. The block, which is christened "Philip Akpo Memorial Roman Catholic JSS", after his late twin-brother, has nine classrooms, two offices, a library, a computer laboratory and places of convenience, is estimated at 1 billion cedis.

The block, which could accommodate 405 pupils, replaces the dilapidated Catholic Boys Junior Secondary School demolished in 1977. Togbe Afede said the casual remark by his late brother, Philip, when they walked past the abandoned school block that if he had the means, he (the deceased) would have completed it represented the motivational force for him (Togbe Afede) to undertake the project. The Agbogbomefia said the building was a monument to the "spirit of love and infinite kindness" of Philip, who opted to remain at home to enable their parents who had little resources to send him (Togbe Afede) to secondary school.

Togbe Afede thanked the British High Commission for furnishing the block at the cost of 146 million cedis.

Mr. Chris Brealey, Second Secretary at the British High Commission who represented the High Commissioner said education was critical for economic growth and a healthy population.

He said lack of basic education meant that young people had fewer choices and opportunities in life.

Mr Brealey said globally, more than 100 million children still did not have any access to education.

He said a report by the International Labour Organization (ILO) indicated that youth unemployment had reached an all time high with young people between 15-24 years representing nearly half of the world's jobless.

Mr Brealey said the UK had provided 56.8 million pounds between 1998-2005 for Ghana under the educational reform sector help. Mr Victor Mensah, Municipal Director of Education said the municipality was unable to meet the infrastructure requirements of schools from its own resources.

He said more than 50 per cent of Junior Secondary School and primary school blocks in the municipality needed immediate repair, while many of the pupils were not properly seated.

Mr Mensah said some pupils were constantly exposed to the weather in school, while chalkboards for some were no bigger than the "top of a deep freezer".

Mr. Kofi Dzamesi, Volta Regional Minister commended Togbe Afede for his efforts, saying development was a shared responsibility. The Strategic African Securities (SAS), which is headed by Togbe Afede, donated 100 million cedis and the Cathedral Parish, five million cedis as seed money for the maintenance of the block.

Mr. Mawutor Goh Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) also gave five million cedis and 10,000 pieces of exercise books to the school. Dr Victor Nyamalor, pledged that his company, Port Dental Clinic in Tema, would stock the library with books and other material worth 10 million cedis. 16 Dec. 05

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