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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

How Ga leaders are failing their children!

My Grandfather, Mokobi -Tsotsoobi Amenong, in his usual conversation with me in his small Hut at Dadekotopon will often render his displeasure with the seemingly fallen standard of education among Ga children of today. He would proudly refer to his youthful days in the 50’s. Through him, I got to know of the deeds of some individuals like Lawyer Benjamin Quartey Papafio, Dr. Nanka Bruce, Sgnt Adjetey and Nii Amaa Ollenu.

Other individuals have shared in my grandfather’s stance, adding that most Ga children of today do not like attending school and end up becoming lazy towards work and sometimes miscreants. These people could not empirically substantiate their claim but I did not write off their case either.

My mind went wild as a result of their concern. Elsewhere in Ghana, we often hear of some traditional rulers’ support packages for teachers and students to promote education in their respective traditional areas. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about many of their counterparts in Greater Accra. If for nothing at all, my birth place, Dadekotopon, has over 4 tertiary institutions situated there, including Ghana’s premium University. Imagine the number of needy but brilliant students from my community who would have become graduates by now if our leaders had managed to secure at least 5 slots in the various tertiary institutions within their jurisdiction to support those students annually.

The proposal of a Ga Education Endowment Fund ushered in yet another developmental agenda for Ga Children. I became hopeful for a better future for youngsters in Accra. Thanks to the media, I saw a number of Corporate Institutions contributing to the fund with a promise of launching it in October, 2009. But what happened? Chieftaincy disputes as to who a Ga Mantse was largely ensured that the fund became a ‘still baby’. Accountability concerning the usage of the fund’s seed capital is yet to be known.

Another sad part of the story is the rampant sale of lands by our traditional leaders which has not birth any major development project for people of Accra. I wept when I saw in the Media how some young people, through the hands of a chief, got brutalized by the police as a result of confrontations over a portion of land recently. I wondered, if it was even worthwhile to risk our lives for leaders who care less about our welfare? Fellow young people, be the first to preach yourself after a seer prophesies to you.

If indeed we have to accept the said lukewarm attitude of Ga Children towards Education and work, then I believe Ga leaders must accept responsibility for that. Chiefs, with due reverence, should not just be custodians of our culture but true partners for socio-economic development in the Greater Accra region and beyond. Many Ga Elites, including some Political leaders from the region have distant themselves from their homes for far too long. This is the time for them to get closer to their folks and assist in addressing their developmental needs.

“A Sheep who thinks it is blemishing the wall by rubbing itself against it deceives itself: it destroys its own fur in the process.” If for nothing at all, I have learnt from the elderly that, ‘A disgrace to the mortar is equally the pestle’s”.

Our Cherished leaders ought to live up to expectation for children in Accra to get the best start in life. We look up to you.

By Gabriel Obodai Torgbor-Ashong
SRC-General Secretary
Ghana Institute of Journalism
gabrielashong@gmail.com

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

GIJ-SRC NEEDS HONEY NOT MONEY!

Activities heralding the 2013 Ghana Institute of Journalism-Student Representative Council (GIJ-SRC) elections have brought up a number of interesting developments. From a person being termed 'so Christianized', to a 'Drink Up'; heated debates at General Assembly, pseudos attacking personalities and writing in defence of aspirants they support, sudden upgrade of wardrobes, and issues with whose posters get to the trees first and other related stuff.

One of these developments, which I find quite worrying, is the seemingly monetized process that should lead a student to become an executive member of the SRC to serve his or her fellow students. The GIJ-SRC constitution may be explicit on the fact that one needs to settle any financial obligation before becoming an executive of the SRC: but ‘helloo!’, a great focus on this may let us lose the actual essence of ensuring good student leadership on campus. Borrowing the words of Comrade Yajah Jagri of level 200, ‘What is morally good to some extent is legally logical. The act that led some of the current leadership… is now described as satanic.’

Comrades, students stand to lose if student leadership on GIJ campus continues to be hinged on finances or money. There may be very competent and hardworking students who could really advocate for students' general welfare, but such students may be kept far from becoming leaders by the mere fact that they may not have the financial muscle to make things happen. Haven’t we by now known the true values and ‘colours’ of the aspirants to determine that certain circumstances, perhaps, beyond their control may not just aid them to fulfil certain obligations? Let me join my Ga folks to say that “Aleee mor leebi ni abaasu kane k3 kw3 ehi3 gb3k3!”

Already, some aspirants have complained about the exorbitant prices charged for the nomination forms. Some individuals may decide to clandestinely recoup their monies after assuming office and that certainly will not be to the benefit of students.

I want to believe that the omission of Miss Grace Asare’s name in the notice issued on Tuesday, 18th March 2013 by GIJ-Electoral Commission doesn’t necessarily mean she has been disqualified since there was nothing to indicate so. The GIJ-Electoral Commission is a nobel body: it should not do anything which will make students question its credibility, especially in crucial times like this.

Students want to serve with a clean heart and not to be ‘exploited’.

Experience, Nobility, Realism and Competency should be key determining factors in Student Leadership. Monies and other material stuff ought to be secondary! It indeed, should be about honey and not money. Shalom!

Gabriel Obodai Torgbor-Ashong
Google Student Ambassador
Level 300-Ghana Institute of Journalism   

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

CURIOUS MINDS TALK CHILD RIGHTS

 Meet members of Curious Minds in Action. Curious Minds is a Young People-led advocacy Organization based at the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation. It advocates for issues that affect young people through its weekly radio programmes and community outreaches. The Organization won the 2008 best child radio programme award for Africa and at the Global level during the Celebration of International Children's Day of Broadcasting(ICPD) in New York. Take time to view their picture profile



Recruitment for Curious Minds! This ensures that the group always have members for their activities.


Pre-Production Meeting- a stage where Ideas are conceived and structured for radio programme

First Production by Curious Minds in Uniiq FM Studio. They talk about Child Rights!

Second Production in Joy FM studio.


Curious Minds does not limit itself to studio work. They organize Community-based programmes as well.

Post Production Meeting at GBC premises. A time meant to access outcomes of their programmes.





Thursday, December 6, 2012

Google Student Ambassadors hold “My Voice Ghana”

Students in various tertiary institutions have added their voice to on-going discussions as Ghana decides on its next President and Parliamentarians. This was done under a project named ” MY Voice Ghana” led by Google Student Ambassadors from eleven tertiary institutions across the country. The project urges the youth to speak on issues that are relevant to the development and progress of the nation. This has been done through series of videos recorded on their various campus which can be found on the My Voice Gh YouTube Channel.
 
Students covered issues ranging from education, Health and to Technology. The ultimate message they aim to get accross is for peace to reign in the country before, during and after the elections.
You can follow discussions on Google+ and Twitter using the hashtag #myvoicegh.
 
The My Voice Project is a Google Student Ambassadors Innitiative to leverage on their wide network to access the voice of the youth to promote peaceful elections and sustainable development.
 
Watch  a short documentary on their ultimate peace campaign message here or follow this link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ArscuvDa0R8

 
Ghana Google Student Ambassadors
 













 
Source: Ghana Decides (http://ghanadecides.com)
 
 

Monday, November 26, 2012

7TH GLOBAL YOUTH SUMMIT STARTS IN LONDON TODAY!

Young people from across the world have converged in London to take part in this year’s Global Changemakers Global Youth Summit. The Summit has started today, 25th November and ends on 1st December, 2012. Global Youth Summit is a British Council’s Global Changemakers initiative which brings together young social entrepreneurs, social activists and volunteers to share ideas and best practices in their field of work. In addition, the summit offers the changemakers an opportunity to work on projects that directly impact the lives of those in their local communities.


This year’s changemakers (ages16-21) were selected from over 3400 applicants from across the world. This week, the new changemakers will be engaged in social entrepreneurship, learning Global issues, best practices in project management and later have a round table discussion with some officials of the British Parliament. Key global issues like human rights, climate change, poverty reduction, education, and HIV/AIDS will also be duly addressed.

Abdulie Badji from The Gambia considers himself as one of the luckiest young people to be attending this summit. He believes in networking and added that “Sharing best practices and information will help to see how best we can turn our ideas into activities to create the change we all hope to see”.

Armin, from Canada thinks this summit offers the best platform to bring about change on the international scale through inspiration and collaboration.

Global Changemakers, since its inception in 2007 has partnered with and participated in Global events like the World Economic Forum events, the Clinton Global Initiative, the Global Humanitarian Forum, various UN initiatives (including UNESCO Peace Ambassador programs, UNFCCC and COP, and the G20. Global Changemakers, as a global network, currently has over 800 social entrepreneurs, social activists and volunteers (ages 16-25) in 126 countries world-wide.