PUC Vice Rector tells African Leaders to invest in ICT education

Posted: August 1, 2010 in Education
Tags: , ,

The Vice Rector of Pentecost University College, Prof. Kwame Boasiako Omane-Antwi, has called on African Leaders and entrepreneurs to invest more resources into education, with special focus on Information Communication Technology (ICT) to help bridge the digital divide between the African continent and the developed world. “If there is one single issue worth your focused attention, it is the continuous fight to reduce illiteracy and school drop-out rates in Africa today. ICT, seemingly, holds the key to improved access to education in Africa,” he noted.

Prof. Omane-Antwi made this remark in Accra on Thursday at a ceremony to re-launch SOTM Limited under the theme ‘Making Scholarship and ICT a solution to the educational needs of Africa and Africans.’

According to him, education is a critical factor in economic expansion, without which the African continent will be lagging behind in terms of development.

“Increasing society level of education is positively correlated to high standards of living. Education is a human right that everyone, regardless of socio-economic background should enjoy. Education is fundamental to ending poverty and achieving the Millennium Development Goals,” said Prof. Omane-Antwi.

He said more than one hundred million children in the world, majority of whom are girls, never go to school, with millions more drop out before acquiring the basic skills they need.

He said “poverty is the main reason for their sad state of affairs and the situation is worst in Africa.”

To that effect, Prof. Omane-Antwi challenged African Leaders and entrepreneurs to look for strategic entry points to address the problem, saying ‘if we keep the system as it is, millions of our children will never get a chance to fulfill their promise because of poverty.”

He was however, happy about ICT infrastructural development in Ghana which is progressing at a rate of 2.9% compared to other low-income countries globally and above the 1.1% for sub-Sahara Africa.

The General Manager (GM) of SOTM, Alexander Osei-Wusu, however, sent words of encouragement to millions of youth across the African continent that his outfit has come to address their educational needs. With a vision to make education free through ordinary sms and to make ICT a tool for job creation, Osei-Wusu said his outfit has introduced a program called ‘TEXT 2 SCHOOL’.

In this program, school going age above eighteen are encouraged to text ‘SOTM’ to the short code 1443 at a cost of Gp50 on Kasapa, MTN, Vodafone or Zain networks.

Funds generated from this program, according to the GM would be used to sponsor hundreds of students in various levels of education every year in Africa.

Through their monthly draws, five winners would be awarded a scholarship amount of two thousand Ghana Cedis to further their education.

“The full amount shall not be paid in cash to the winner. SOTM shall pay such amounts directly through cheques or payment orders to the institution in which the winner is enrolled until the amount is fully utilized. This is to ensure that the amount won is not misapplied by the winner,” noted Osei-Wusu.

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