The University of Ghana (UG) and the Ho Technical University have emerged winners in the first phase of the University Civic Challenge organised by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) for the Eastern Zone.
The Challenge had participating schools answering questions on the structure and functions of the three arms of government, chieftaincy, district and local governance, directive principles of state policy, petroleum, history, constitutional demands and general knowledge.
The winning Universities are expected to compete with other universities in the second phase of the challenge in the course of the year at Cape Coast.
Other Universities that participated in the challenge were the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), All Nations University, Ashesi University, Islamic University College, and the University of Professional Studies Accra.
Mrs Elizabeth Sackey, the Deputy Greater Accra Regional Minister speaking on the theme: “Ghana, One People: Our Values, Our Sovereignty in Participatory Democracy,” said the theme emphasised the need for the citizenry to strive to maintain the peace, unity, and stability the nation enjoyed.
She urged the public to take active part in decision making processes, and made reference to the President’s request for all and sundry to be citizens and not spectators.
Mrs Sackey said when citizens voluntarily took part in decision making processes, it would secure the future of the country for the youth.
“We need to fight for a strong and responsible democracy, as well as a prosperous and growing economy,” she said.
Mrs Sackey called on the public, especially students to protect the values, culture and good practices of the country that highlighted the real identity of the nation.
Ms Josephine Nkrumah, the Chairperson of the NCCE, advised that members of the public to learn the provisions of the Constitution in order to defend their rights where and when necessary.
The competition, she said, was to equip participants on national discourse to develop an interest in contributing to community development from the grassroots level.
“Education is not the filling of pot, but lighting of a fire”, she said and urged students to actively participate in issues that would promote national development as studying without utilising the knowledge for the benefit of others was not enough.
Professor Anthony Mawuli Sallar, the Dean of Students of GIMPA, in his welcome address, said the theme called on all well meaning citizens to respect each other, pursue corruption, protect the sovereignty of the State, build on the core values of the constitution and the capacity of the citizens to defend the constitution.
He advised members of the public to develop interest in politics as it was a major driver of socio-economic development.
“If you say, you are not interested in politics, then you are a bad citizen,” he added.