Intellectuals and experts must collaborate and work together in addressing challenges confronting the country, says Dr. Kwame Amezah, Director of Agriculture Extension Service, Ministry of Agriculture.
“This is the surest way to build on gains made in the quest for development,” he said.
“Intellectuals and experts are the first agents of change, and it is in our interests to create the right environment for them to work and operate to improve our lives,” he said.
Dr. Amezah made these remarks at the handing over ceremony of the Ghana Australia Alumni Association (G3A) to usher in the first constitutionally-elected executive.
The association, which consists of Ghanaians awarded scholarship to study in various fields at tertiary institutions in Australia, has Frederick Nsatimba as president, and Martha Louis Koku as his vice.
Other executives include Daniel Ninson, general secretary; Spendilove Frimpong, treasurer; and Gordon Adjei Okyere, organising secretary.
Dr. Amezah urged the Association to use its diverse human resource to influence decisions relating to empowering and improving the economic wellbeing of Ghanaians.
In a speech read on his behalf, Andrew Barnes, the Australian High Commissioner in Accra, commended the outgoing administration for building a strong association which aimed to improve relations between the two countries, and urged the new executive to tap into their experience to build a vibrant and dynamic association.
He stressed that Australia was committed to building the capacity of individuals who would contribute to the growth of Ghana.
“This alumni association is central to the success of the Australia Scholarship Awards programme in Ghana. Not only are you cherished ambassadors for Australia to potential applicants, but also your continued role in supporting old and new awardees at every phase of the awards cycle provides a human face to the programme,” he said.
Mr. Barnes announced that 16 more Ghanaians had been offered scholarship to study in Australia this year, and expressed the hope that they could count on the association’s support, advice and experience to steer them smoothly through their awards journey.
Mr. Nsatimba, on his part, reiterated his commitment to working together with other executives to achieve the objectives of the group, and called on members to eschew apathy, which was hindering progress.
He pledged to be transparent in all transactions and open to all members to secure the trust and confidence required to move the organisation forward.
Mr. Nsatimba appealed to the Australian government to develop a grant scheme for the association to be able to carry out activities and strategies designed to support the country’s development.
He was optimistic his administration would provide the right leadership needed to pursue feasible projects, and urged members to join in building the association’s image.
By Claude Nyarko Adams