Businesses, industries no longer interested in grammar school graduates
President John Dramani Mahama has challenged the unemployed and potential job seekers to acquire technical skills to meet the demands of today’s job market.
According to the president, the job market today is looking for skilled technical and practical personnel and not the usual way of giving out vacancies to graduates from “classroom and grammar schools.”
Addressing students of the Takoradi Polytechnic where he cut sod for the commissioning of the now Takoradi Technical University Monday, President Mahama stated: “the demands of the job market have changed. Business and industry is no longer looking for the ‘book-long,’ grammar school education that some of us received.”
He indicated that the skills and competences needed by these businesses and industries were “in boundless supply in institutions such as the Takoradi Technical University.”
The institute was established since 1954 and formed part of six polytechnics being converted into technical universities in a first phase by the ruling NDC government.
President Mahama told the students and people of the Western region that conversion of the polytechnic into a technical university marked the beginning of a new chapter in the country’s technical educational system.
He said regardless of the demand for more skilled hands by industries, investment and exploitation of the full potential of polytechnic institutions has been minimal over the years.
“Even though Technical and vocational education has been very important to Ghana’s socio-economic growth, the huge potential that it represents as a vehicle for enhancing economic productivity and social transformation has not been exploited to its fullest extent,” President Mahama stated.
The president added that the Cape Coast and the Tamale Polytechnics were being re-assessed for inclusion in the six, already approved institutions ready to be converted into technical universities.
He assured the people that his government will fast-track the passage of the Technical Universities Bill which is at the cabinet level to be sent to Parliament for ratification.
“The Technical Universities Bill has been finalized by the Attorney General’s Department. It is currently under consideration by the National Council for Tertiary Education. It will go to Cabinet and will be presented to parliament when Parliament resumes sitting this month.
But I can assure you the bill will be passed at the next sitting of Parliament and in the academic year starting 2016/2017,” the President assured.