Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, Minister of Communications and Digitalisation, has called on individuals to partner with the government to provide young people with the right digital skills for rapid socio-economic development.
“The acquisition of digital skills for young people at every corner of Ghana can be given when Information Communication and Technology (ICT) centres are provided in various communities,” she said.
“So there is the need for individuals to partner with the government by providing ICT structures while the government also provides computers and other ICT resources to equip such centres.”
“If we broaden this partnership we will broaden the scope of ICT across the country,” she added.
Mrs Owusu-Ekuful made the call at the inaugural ceremony of Janet Brako Community Library and ICT centre at Akyem Bieni in the Achiase District of the Eastern Region.
Dr Albert Antwi-Bosiako, Founder of Education for Development (E4D) Foundation and a National Cyber Security Advisor, provided
the Community Library and ICT Centre.
He said the Library was a demonstration of his commitment to education to the people in the community.
The E4D Foundation is a non-governmental organisation that envisions a community-based development achieved through teaching and learning support, ICT skills development support, education and development coaching and mentorship.
The centre was completed through collaborations with local stakeholders, national actors and international partners and would serve other several communities, including Akyem Anyinam Kotoku.
The Community Library and ICT Centre was named after Madam Janet Brako, Dr Antwi-Bosiako’s mother, who single-handedly took care of him after the demise of his father at a tender age.
In line with the government’s agenda to facilitate connectivity in both unserved and underserved communities, the Centre would offer students the opportunity to learn how to use technology and information to meet their needs and aspirations.
The Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communication (GIFEC) provided the centre with 20 desktop DELL computers and their accessories while the Ghana Library Authority provided books and electronic resources.
Mr Kofi Asante, Administrator of GIFEC, said GIFEC aimed at promoting digital inclusion at the community level by funding the provision of basic ICT training to civil and public servants and others in unserved communities using Community ICT Centres.
Mr Evans Korletey-Tene, Eastern Regional Director of Ghana Library Authority, urged children to use the facility judiciously to enhance their academic performance.
Rev. John Ntim Fordjour, Deputy Minister of Education, lauded the Founder of E4D for the donation and said the library would improve the reading abilities of pupils and offer the children to put the computers into good use.
He said the Ministry was in progress putting in place measures to curb “learning poverty” which has about 53 per cent of 10 years old students incapable of reading.
The Ministry has introduced an intervention known as the National Standardised Test for primary four students across Ghana, he said, which is expected to kick start this year.
“The intervention will give the Ghana Education Service ample time to intervene in the lives of pupils in areas of literacy and mathematics,” he added.
Daasebre Gyeni Kenten II, Chief of Akyem Achiase, called on the beneficiaries to properly maintain the facility and also urged trainers to guide students who patronised the facility.
As part of the ceremony, a seven-member Advisory Board of Education for Development Foundation was inaugurated and sworn in.
It had Dr Franklin Amoah, former Executive Director of Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana and Dr Adu Anane Antwi, former Director-General of Securities and Exchange Commission as Co-Chair.