First Lady of the Republic Mrs. Rebecca Naa Okaikor Akufo-Addo says the surest way for government to reduce unemployment is to strengthen the TVET arm of the country’s educational system and to encourage the youth to choose Technical and Vocational Education and Training, in order to equip them with employable skills for the world of work.
She said the rate of evolution in the global artisanal market required that human resources are strengthened in order to be able to adapt to changing trends, if they are to remain relevant in the global work force market.
Mrs. Akufo-Addo made the comments when she joined other dignitaries at the launch of the very first Technical and Vocational Education and Training Expo, at the Movenpick Ambassador Hotel in Accra today.
The event which was held under the theme “Building a Robust TVET System to Transform Ghana”, aims at throwing more light on the reforms and achievements in the TVET sector and to help change negative perceptions about TVET.
In her keynote address, Mrs Akufo-Addo said as Executive Director of the Rebecca Foundation, the outcome of her work through the “Terema Initiative” to equip young women with TVET skills, to set them up for life, has convinced her that TVET is the surest platform to improving individual livelihoods and propelling national development stating, “that is why when the Ministry of Education and COTVET approached me to be the Principal TVET Ambassador, I didn’t hesitate at all”.
She said, together with her fellow TVET Ambassadors, they will target students at the Basic Level, females, persons with special needs and disadvantaged children who need to be made more aware of their strengths, interests and talents, and guide them to make more informed choices about the opportunities that exist in skilled professions, in accordance with the SDG goal 4, which seeks to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
Mrs. Akufo-Addo also identified the need to work closely with stakeholders like teachers, community leaders and the public and private sectors who also shape the decisions the youth make in choosing their career paths.
She said if well implemented, TVET will among other things enable the country create more professionals and increase participation in the world of work, thereby building the human capital of the nation and ensuring financial independence and psychological wellbeing of individuals as well as contribute positively to national revenue mobilization through expansion of the tax net.
The First lady said while government has so far spent $600 Million as part of efforts to strengthen TVET in the country it was imperative for civil society and opinion leaders to join in the promotion of TVET as the best means of skills acquisition and employment creation for our youth.
Mrs. Akufo-Addo thanked the Ministry of Education for her appointment as Principal TVET Ambassador and promised together with her colleague Ambassadors to do their best to support the Ministry of Education and COTVET to ensure that TVET becomes the preferred mode of education for the Ghanaian youth.
The event was also attended by the Minister of Education and NPP MP for Manhyia Hon. Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Deputy Minister for Education and NPP MP for Abuakwa North, Hon. Gifty Twum-Ampofo, the Board Chairman of COTVET Mr. Francis Awua-Kyeremanten, and Executive Director of COTVET Dr Fred Kyei Asamoah, among others.