President Nana Akufo-Addo has said that no Ghanaian child should be denied secondary school education, as it is a period in the life of every young person in Ghana when they begin their journey into adulthood and make lifelong choices and friends.
Speaking at the 70th-anniversary celebration of Opoku Ware Senior High School in the Ashanti Region on Saturday (3 December 2022), President Akufo-Addo said secondary education is an experience to which no child of school-going age should be denied access.
“Senior high school is an exciting period in every young person’s life,” the president said. “Apart from what we all take from our parents in our home, most of what goes into fashioning our outlook in life comes from the schools we attend.
“It is the time we learn most of the things that we use in our lives. It is often the place where lifelong friendships are formed and an exciting time of learning new things,” Akufo-Addo said.
“It is an experience that we must not deprive any young child, whether from Kumasi, Tamale, Keta or Axim, from having,” President Akufo-Addo said.
“If we [Ghanaians] are to realise in our time, the words of the theme of this [Opoku Ware’s 70th] anniversary celebration, ‘Seven Decades of Leadership Through Self-Discipline’, then we have a collective responsibility to help guarantee access to quality education for all the youth of our country.
“When we do this, then we can … be confident of achieving the vision of a progressive and prosperous Ghana which animated the struggles for freedom and independence of our forebears, for which some paid the ultimate price,” Akufo-Addo said.
“We must have the belief that our nation can make its own unique contribution to the growth of world civilisation and be able to generate dignified standards of living for the masses of her people, and build a Ghana Beyond Aid.”
History and the experiences of developed nations, President Akufo-Addo said, “have shown us that the most efficient way to create a society of opportunity and thereby guarantee the future of our nation is by investing in education and skills training of our youth”.
“This is because it is the people of Ghana – Ghanaians like you and me, and especially the youth of today – who are going to build Ghana. Without an educated populace, we cannot transition from the status of a developing to a developed nation,” Akufo-Addo said.
In response to a request by the headmaster and the school prefect of Opoku Ware SHS, President Akufo-Addo pledged that his government will give a befitting 70th birthday present to the school.
“The Office of the President will also help to give an appropriate birthday gift. I think a new administration block will be such a gift,” Akufo-Addo said.
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