The University of Education, Winneba (UEW), on Wednesday, 26 May 2021, conferred honorary doctorate degrees on Prof Aaron Michael Oquaye, the Speaker of Ghana’s 7th Parliament of the 4th Republic and Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, Minister of Energy, “for their invaluable contributions to society”.
The two, according to the university, were recognised and celebrated for their impactful contributions to education and nation-building.
The two politicians, UEW said, have contributed significantly to the nation’s education from different perspectives in the functional areas they served.
As an accomplished academic, Prof Oquaye has researched and published extensively on good governance, conflict resolution, political education, decentralisation, gender, military adventurism in politics, NGOs, rural development and human rights.
Dr Prempeh on the other hand, according to the university, heralded bold commitments in spearheading reforms in the educational sector.
“Key government achievements in the educational sector such as the flagship Free SHS, the introduction of the double-track system, and free meals for first-cycle institutions, have all been successfully implemented during his tenure as the sector minister,” the university stated.
In a speech delivered on behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Chief of Staff Frema Akosua Opare relayed the president’s commendation to the management of UEW for recognising the contributions and distinguished services of Prof Oquaye and Dr Prempeh to mother Ghana and humanity.
“I commend the management of the University of Education, Winneba, for organising this memorable congregation. I was delighted when I received the invitation and saw the personalities to be honoured at this special occasion,” she indicated.
She praised the management of UEW for showing the way in the ingenious use of internally- generated funds (IGF) for the many infrastructural projects it had embarked on to create access and a better learning environment for students and staff.
She also applauded the University for adopting a creative approach in harnessing staff and student talents, stressing that it was something worth emulating.
The Chairman of the Governing Council of UEW, Prof Obeng Mireku congratulated the government for actualising its touted promise of providing Free Senior High School education for all Ghanaians.
“The upcoming academic year will witness the admission of the first batch of SHS students from the double-track system, which was introduced by this government a few years ago,” he said.
Prof Mireku pointed to the Governing Council’s continuous support for all the measures and interventions initiated by the management of UEW to improve and expand infrastructure to absorb the large numbers that would qualify for admission.
“It is our hope and aspiration that the University shall continue to wax stronger in the pursuit of its strategic objectives, vision and mission.”
The Vice-Chancellor, Rev. Fr. Prof. Anthony Afful-Broni, expressed UEW’s gratitude to the President of Ghana for his unflinching support to the University in building a globally renowned centre of excellence for teacher education.
“To all our dignitaries, your interest and support in education strengthen our resolve to keep working hard, fully convinced that universities play critical roles in building societies in fundamental ways. As an academic community, we conscientiously remind ourselves of the power of education to profoundly change our world. This is because education can, and does break intergenerational life cycles. It rewrites the life scripts of people of all races, ages, cultures, and religions. For these great reasons, we are determined to continue dedicating our lives to our nation through holistic education,” the Vice-Chancellor stated.
UEW has had the opportunity of duly recognising and honouring eminent personalities such as the 1st President of the 4th Republic of Ghana, Ft. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings of blessed memory; the 2nd President of the 4th Republic of Ghana, John Agyekum Kufuor; former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Alhaji Abdulsalami Abubakar; 1st Vice-Chancellor of UEW, Prof. Jophus Anamuah-Mensah; Prof. Esi Sutherland Addy, among others.