Ho — GOVERNMENT will this week address the grievances of the Technical Universities Teachers Association of Ghana (TUTAG) whose members are on strike over service conditions, Professor Kwesi Yankah, Minister of State in-charge of Tertiary Education has assured.
He insisted that a continued strike action was no longer necessary as negotiations between the association and Government over the matter have been smooth and just about ending with fruitful outcomes.
Professor Yankah, therefore, urged TUTAG to demonstrate goodwill by going back to the classroom to resume teaching to avoid derailing the academic calendar.
The Minister of State was speaking at the investiture of the first substantive Vice Chancellor of the Ho Technical University (HTU) Professor Ben Q. Honyenuga, in Ho on Saturday.
"It is unfortunate that even as we induct a new Vice Chancellor into office, we do so in a functional vacuum, where UTAG is on strike, and no teaching and formal learning have taken place in the past few days," he added.
Professor Yankah re-affirmed Government's unflinching commitment to ensuring that the educational system was responsive to the country's changing times and needs, saying that teaching and learning were not only examination-centred.
"You must remain focused on the application of Competency-Based Training (CBT) approach to teaching and learning, and I am happy to note that HTU has taken a good lead in this regard," he said.
Meanwhile, Professor Yankah announced that Government, though COVET was in the process of providing state-of-the-art laboratory equipment to selected technical/vocational institutions across the country, adding that HTU was among three technical universities selected for that project.
Professor Yankah congratulated Professor Honyenuga on his feat, and entreated him to work to transform every challenge into a golden opportunity to assert innovative leadership.
He maintained that technical universities ought to be charting a new path of research and innovation distinct from other universities, and said that paradigm required leadership with the potential of delivering optimum outcomes to justify the undertaking.
In his maiden speech as Vice Chancellor, Professor Honyenuga pledged to move research of faculty in the university from the cradle stage to acceptable levels of international demand.
"Undoubtedly, we are in a global world where internationalisation of universities is key.
"Hence, I will expand the existing international collaborations and seek collaboration with more reputable institutions globally in mounting varied, recognized and relevant programmes", he said.
The Chairman of HTU Council, Professor Emmanuel James Flolu, who administered the Oath of Office, entreated the staff of the university to throw their weight behind Professor Honyenuga to lift the flag of the institution to greater heights.
He described the Professor Honyenuga as a blessing and an asset to HTU, saying "this is the first time a faculty has risen to professorial level.
The Dedication Rites were performed by the Catholic Bishop of Ho, Most Rev. Emmanuel K. Fianu.
Professor Honyenuga started his career as an instructor at the then Ho Polytechnic in December, 1997.
He was promoted to Senior Instructor in January, 2003 and appointed Assistant Registrar in March 2003, and then Lecturer in June, 2004.
In July, 2010, Professor Honyenuga was promoted to the grade of Associate Professor.
The UN certified Trainer of Trainers in Conflict Transformation served as Pro-Vice Chancellor and Acting Vice Chancellor of HTU from October 2018 to June 2019.
He obtained a PhD from Maastricht Open University of Netherlands in July 2015.
The investiture took a festive form with chiefs from various part of the Volta Region, representatives of the various technical universities in the country and a large number of people from all walks of life turning up at the G. M. Afeti Auditorium on the campus to witness the event.
Among them was the 87-year-old Madam Mary Atakuma Adanfo, mother of Professor Honyenuga.
Pix: 1. Catholic Bishop of Ho, Most Rev. Fianu taking Professor Honyenuga through the Dedication Rites
2. Minister of State in-charge of Tertiary Education - Professor Kwesi Yankah