The 71st Annual New Year School and Conference (ANYSC), ended in Accra on Friday, with a call on Governments to reset Ghana’s international relationship policy to reflect the Ghana Beyond Aid (GhaBA) agenda.
Participants in a communique recommended that Ghanaians should develop and enhance their negotiation skills to explore more beneficial commercial and economic trade agreements.
The communique said in order to ensure that the GhaBA becomes a national transformation agenda; the government’s exit strategy for aid should involve a comprehensive education on a new mindset and national orientation through advocacy and sensitisation of different demographic groups to ensure broader participatory development.
“To ensure the continuance of GhaBA after the current political administration, the policy must be incorporated into a consultative National Development Framework to be followed by all successive governments and backed by a bi-partisan legislation from parliament,” it said.
“Government should reduce the nation’s internal and external debt to sustainable levels and pursue import-substitution industrialization and value addition to our exports to make us more self-reliant for our development,” it said.
It said to ensure effective ways of revenue mobilisation, government should aggressively pursue the drive to digitise and formalize the economy.
It also recommended that the tax holiday policy must urgently be reviewed and more efficient systems put in place for the collection and payments of taxes.
It recommended the educational curriculum from the basic to the tertiary level should be updated to inculcate and promote core Ghanaian values and encourage changes in attitudes and behaviour that would create a more sustainable future in terms of environmental integrity, economic viability and a just society for the present and future generations.
It said state institutions charged with public education such as the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Information Service Department should be well resourced to drive the promotion of positive learnings about the principles, values and practices for sustainable development.
The communique also recommended that the Government should drive policy towards better and more effective Science and technical and vocational education training (TVET) education.
It urged the Government to expedite action on the retooling of TVET institutions in the country and increase support for the technical universities for the training of practically inclined human capital for the country.
It said the government should as a matter of urgency commission a national skills gap/skills need assessment to determine the requisite human capital necessary for our development and actualizing of the GhaBA agenda.
The communique further urged the Government to expedite action on the setting up of a National Development Bank to provide financial support for private sector development and to increase investments in agricultural, non-agricultural and agro-processing industrialisation.
The 71st Annual New Year School and Conference was on the general theme, “Attaining GhaBA: Prospects and Challenges”. Over 517 participants from the 16 regions of the country, the various metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs), public and private institutions and worker unions attended.
It also attracted 260 students from some selected senior high schools and tertiary institutions.
The three-day event, which was officially opened by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was organised by the School of Continuing and Distance Education, University of Ghana.
While the closing ceremony was performed by Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Academic and Student Affairs, University of Ghana.
It was introduced in 1948, and brings together people from all walks of life to deliberate on topical issues of national and international interest.