The Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (COTVET), has held a validation workshop on the establishment of sector skills bodies in Ghana.
The workshop aims at providing a common platform for stakeholders to review and as well make inputs to the approved five year strategic document being implemented by the Government to transform the Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) sector.
Under the strategic plan, TVET institutions will be realigned to the Ministry of Education.
Dr Fred Kyei Asamoah, the Executive Director, COTVET, in his remarks noted that the five-year strategic plan was part of the Government’s agenda to transform the TVET landscape to ensure that there were appropriate and relevant skills for the job market.
He said the strategic framework that would guide the process included; the establishment of sector skills bodies that would help focus on each economic sector to come out with modalities to be able to focus and give the demand that the economy needed.
He said COTVET believed in competency based approach, and that was why efforts were being made to ensure that industry was part and therefore led the process particularly in an era where all efforts were being made to create more jobs.
“Government made a proposal, however, it believes that skills development should be championed by the private sector and industry; as this could not be achieved without going through the due process,” he added.
The Executive Director said COTVET would continue to appeal to the private sector and various stakeholders to dialogue and help develop employees to ensure that they had the necessary skills to take them to the next level and also attract more investment into the country.
In his presentation, Mr Theophilus Zogblah, Coordinator for Occupational Standards at COTVET said there was a need to improve on the governance and management of TVET in Ghana through Public Private Partnership (PPP).
He explained that this would ensure that TVET was responsive to the needs of the private sector.
He said the tasks of sector skills bodies and councils included; forecasting skills needs, matching training provision to labour market needs, identifying the demand and supply gap in each sector and future requirements and preparation of occupational or qualification standards.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, Dr Kofi Bobi Barimah, Director of Research at the Ghana Technology University College, said the workshop had identified surplus skills and suggested the export of some of these skills.
“If we are able to make arrangement with governments that need such skills, those involved will be well managed and they will pay tax; this will generate revenue to train more of such people.”
Dr Bobi Barimah cited Canada, where there were Nurses from Philippines, stating that government could fast track these arrangements, as part of measures to curb the alarming rate of unemployment.
Professor Eric Kwasi Ofori, Dean/ Associate Professor at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, also told GNA that one of the tasks of TVET was to provide funding opportunities for training skills, however it was becoming increasingly difficult for government to fund tertiary institutions.
He noted that the failure to address issues concerning funding of tertiary education would be difficult for institutions to produce graduates with the requisite skills needed by industry and government needed to come clearly on its role in funding tertiary institutions so as to allow the private sector and industry to support.