A DEPUTY Minister for Education in charge of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET), Gifty Twum Ampofo, has declared that government will not relent on its efforts to provide free skill, technical and vocational training to its teeming youth for it is the surest way of guaranteeing them jobs.
Mrs Ampofo noted that the Council for Technical Vocational Education and Training (COTVET) through Ghana TVET Voucher Project was providing the avenue for artisans, mastercraftsmen, those within the informal sector and school leavers including school dropouts to prepare themselves for the world of work.
According to her, trends in the global labour market indicate that personnel with skills or vocation were on high demand.
Therefore, it was important for the citizenry to position themselves properly and make good use of the Ghana TVET Voucher Project by learning and upgrading their skills to international standards so that they could have their share of the global labour market, she said.
“Let us strive to build ourselves and add value to our skills using the Ghana TVET Voucher Project as the springboard,” she noted.
Gifty Twum Ampofo who is also the Member of Parliament (MP) for Abuakwa North made these observations when addressing a team of master craftsmen, apprentices, workers and skilled experts in academia prior to the launch of the Ghana TVET Voucher Project in Koforidua in the Eastern Region.
The Ghana TVET Project is under the Ghanaian-German Financial Development Cooperation and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMW) through KfW Development Bank and the Government of Ghana.
The five-year development project is part of TVET reforms to train about 16,000 master craftsmen, apprentices and their workers in several artisanal trade with an estimated value of €22m.
It has since its inception in September 2017, trained over 5,000 people in areas such as: beauty and cosmetic, electronics, automobile building construction, tailoring and dressmaking, among others.
After the five years is exhausted, Mrs Ampofo said, the government would review the project which had been piloted in the Greater Accra, Ashanti, Northern and Volta regions, and expand it to benefit more people.
Apart from the Ghana TVET Voucher Project, she said the government had also implemented a number of measures to facilitate the acquisition of employable skills for the youth.
Key amongst them, she said, was the introduction of free Senior High School (SHS) education which secures access to minimum of SHS education for all children with emphasis on TVET education to make them competitive on the global labour market.
Further to that, the government was in the process of establishing the TVET Service and TVET Council, as well as a whole directorate of the Ghana Education Service dedicated to the management of Technical and Vocational Education with its own director.
The Executive Director of the COTVET, Dr Fred Kyei Asamoah, said it was the vision of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to achieve the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda, therefore, TVET as a component of that agenda, remains high among the priority lists of the President.
“Skills are a major component of the Ghana Beyond Aid Agenda and we not going to stop. If you look at Malaysia from 1980, they got five to eight year TVET strategic plans. They are almost finishing the 8th one and that is what the Government of Ghana is learning from. Now if you go to Malaysia, they are even exporting some of their machines to Germany and some other countries.”
To be part of the project, Dr Asamoah said, the training must be competence based; explaining further that institutions involved would have to be accredited by COTVET in order to benefit from the Ghana TVET Voucher Project.
BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI