Accra, June 2, GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor on Thursday called on parents and guardians to regard the education of their children and wards as a sacred duty and perform it willingly. He said in a highly competitive and rapidly changing global world dominated by Information and Communication Technology (ICT) denying a child structured formal education, including computer literacy, was almost like consigning the child to a life of limited opportunities.
"Parents and guardians can no longer afford to neglect the education of their children if they are to achieve their full potential and enjoy fulfilling professional and social lives in future", he added. President Kufuor made the call when he joined Prince Al-Waleed Bin Talal Bin Abdul Aziz Alsaud of Saudi Arabia to inaugurate a 300,000-dollar Ayawaso Community Learning Centre at Nima in Accra.
The Centre, a Comprehensive Basic School, comprises a kindergarten block for 120 pupils, a six-unit classroom block for the primary level, a three-unit classroom block for the JSS, a Computer Centre, toilet facilities, playing fields, a fence wall and a pedestrian walkway. The project was financed by Prince Al-Waleed, from a one-million dollar (8.6 billion Cedis) donation he made in April 2003 to three institutions in the health and education sectors.
Six hundred thousand dollars of the amount went to the health sector for research into malaria, malnutrition in children and HIV/AIDS. Three hundred thousand dollars of the amount was for Pre-School Education of the Ministry of Education and Sports and 100,000 dollars for the Otumfuo Education Fund.
The donation was in response to an appeal made by President Kufuor when Prince Al-Waleed called on him at the Castle, Osu, during the visit to assist pre-school education and research institutions in the health sector.
President Kufuor said the Government's education policy was to improve access to quality education in a fair and equitable manner from kindergarten through Junior Secondary School (JSS).
He said the provision of the Centre was in line with the Government's policy on education and expressed the hope that it would not only enhance access to basic education but also expose the pupils to basic computer skills and the Internet from a very early age. "This is also in line with the Government's human resources development policy."
President Kufuor said by the donation, Prince Al-Waleed had created an opportunity for all pupils and students of the Nima and Ayawaso Sub-Metropolitan Area because very few first cycle institutions in Ghana command such resources.
He, therefore, called on the headmaster, staff, pupils and students of the Centre to take very good care of the facilities for the next and future generation pupils and students.
In response to an appeal by the community for the Senior Secondary School (SSS) in the area, President Kufuor said the Government would take it into consideration.
Prince Al-Waleed said his commitment to the development of the health and education sectors of Ghana would continue. He called on the Government to endeavour to replicate the model school in other parts of the country.
Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Minister of Education and Sports, called on the management of the Centre to ensure its maintenance and ensure discipline.
Chief Baba Issah, Spokesman of the Community, said the construction of an overhead bridge over the Kanda Highway would be ideal to protect the lives of the pupils and students who patronised facilities at the Centre. Source: GNA