Peki (V/R), Jan 14, GNA - The President and Vice President of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in the United States on Thursday paid an exploratory visit to Peki Traditional Area in the Volta Region in pursuant of a commitment to establish a Centre of Excellence for Policy Development and Analysis in West Africa at Peki. The President, Dr. Thelma B. Thompson and Vice in Charge of Academic Affairs, Dr Emmanuel Acquah paid curtsey calls on the Paramount Chief of Peki Traditional Area, Deiga Kwadzo Dei XI, and other sub-chiefs in the catchments area of the proposed site covering two-and-half square-kilome tre - (Peki Adzokoe, Todome Kpalime and Daffor Awudome).
The Paramount Chief said the project would perpetuate Peki's status as the cradle of formal education that started with the arrival of the German Missionary, Reverend Lorenz Wolf in 1847. Deiga Kwadzo Dei said the chiefs and people are committed and united for the establishment of the centre and assured the President that the title deed on the plot in their name would be handed over to them soon.
Dr Thompson, commended the chief and people of Peki Traditional Area for the commitment and appealed to all Ghanaians to support in both cash and other resource for the establishment of the centre which would be the pride of, not only Ghana, but Africa as a whole. Technical experts from the Department of Technology, of the University are expected in the country to carry out feasibility studies for the project to start in July this year. The Centre is envisioned to provide training for future leaders, offer an opportunity for renowned scientists in Africa, who are so busy and have little or no time to write their memoirs to do that and mentor the youth.
Dr Thompson appealed to the South Dayi District Assembly, the Ministry of Education Youth and Sport, the Ministry of Roads and Transport and the Government to support in the provision of infrastructure and facilities like road, electricity and water. The American University already has partnership programmes with the University of Cape Coast (UCC) on Hotel and Tourism and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) on Cultural Tourism.
In a related development, President John Agyekum Kufuor had pledged the Government's commitment and cooperation for the establishment of the centre, he said during a curtsey call on him by Dr Thompson and Dr Acquah that: "I could visualize the beginning of a University in that part of the country and assure you of Government's full co-operation". He expressed appreciation to the American University for what it had been doing through its counterparts in Ghana to help move the nation forward.