President Hails MUCG’S Efforts at Entrepreneurship Education
The President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo has lauded the Methodist University College Ghana (MUCG) for its efforts at entrepreneurship education and training.
Speaking at MUCG’s International Conference on Entrepreneurship, Business and Technology (ICEBUT), at the M-Plaza Hotel, Accra on Monday, 27th March, 2017, the President made particular mention of the entrepreneurship training programme organized for national service personnel at Sunyani in 2014 by the then Centre for Entrepreneurship Education Research and Training (CEERT) of MUCG. He urged the University College to roll out more of such programmes in future. The Centre (CEERT) has since been converted into the current Institute of Entrepreneurial Education (IEE), which organized the International Conference.
President Akuffo-Addo saw his invitation to be the Guest of Honour at the conference as most appropriate because two main factors passionate to him since the electioneering campaign were the economy and jobs. He praised the Methodist University College Ghana for already carving a niche for itself within the context of tertiary education.
The President, however, bemoaned the current work attitude of some Ghanaians saying ‘we are in danger of getting things out of balance’. He said these days hardwork, cleanliness and respect for law and order are being overlooked. He lamented the situation where people have become dependent on miracles and not hardwork. He said people go for all-night prayers and come to work late and tired the following morning. He was quick to add that, it would be unfair to discount the hardwork of countless others over the years. He cautioned Ghanaians to maintain a good balance, quoting two scriptures to buttress his point by stating ‘A false balance is an abomination to the Lord’ and ‘There is a time and a place for everything’.
Emphasizing his point, the President said ‘we cannot, and should not hide behind religiosity to indulge in the practice that has characterized our attitude to work’. He called on churches and mosques to help in the advocacy for the attitudinal change needed to build a new economy. He averred that ‘we must have an efficient and competent civil service’. He posited that something went wrong when cocoa farmers ended up being poor whilst a customs officer was able to build a house within a very short period of time. ‘There should be something fundamentally wrong when a COCOBOD official is becoming richer whilst the Cocoa farmer is becoming poorer and unappreciated. ‘We have turned the economic orthodox upside-down’; he added.
President Akuffo-Addo said if the public service had become more attractive to all then there was a problem. According to him, ‘it is in our own interest that those who set up business ventures are able to generate growth’. He said the current budget showed that the government was serious about creating a conducive business environment to enable private enterprises to thrive; adding that ‘we need to align with present day realities’.
The President said ‘the change must come from our schools’. He posited that, the mindset of finishing school and be looking for jobs was no longer sustainable. ‘Now it is entrepreneurship that builds economies’, he noted. He observed that ‘we need to change attitudes’. He, however, paused and asked ‘but how?’.
Nana Akuffo-Addo pointed out that the value of a university is measured by how its graduates can find jobs. ‘We must ensure that our next batch of graduate leaders are properly trained’; he noted. He said he looked forward to the success of the conference and the policies that would be developed from it. He said he believed that the youth had entrepreneurship potentials but just needed a framework to develop them.
In a closing remark to the conference, the Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church Ghana and Chairman of the MUCG Governing Council, The Most Rev. Titus Awotwi-Pratt said the Methodist Church thrived in the 18th Century not because it preached but because of its social interventions. He said ‘in the capitalist world, the entrepreneur is the activist because he creates wealth and generates growth’. He called for a conducive political climate and system of governance that would minimize impunity, promote rule of law and reduce corruption. He also hoped the conference would generate something positive and lead to publications and policies that would stimulate action for entrepreneurship. He made a presentation of a plaque to the President on behalf of the Methodist University College Ghana.
Earlier on, the Director of the Conference, Prof. Ato Essuman made an opening statement which was followed by a welcome address by the Principal of the University College, Prof. Akwasi Asabere-Ameyaw.
There were 85 participants in all at the conference, coming from countries namely Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Zambia, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Tanzania and the United Kingdom.
Prof. Constant D. Buegre of Management and Entrepreneurship Department of Business Administration, Delaware State University, United States of America was the Keynote Speaker.
In attendance were Deputy Minister-designate for Education, Hon. Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Vice Principal of MUCG, The Very Rev. Prof. J.M.Y Edusa-Eyison, Deans of Faculties, other MUCG Staff and the Presidential Press Corp.