Exploit Your Potential For National Development � Okudzeto Ablakwa

The Deputy Minister of Education in charge of Tertiary Education, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has charged the youth to exploit their potentials and skills for national development.

He said it is necessary for them to try and test their abilities, skills and potentials now rather than waiting to leave school or reach some particular level. The minister who is also the Member of Parliament (MP) for the North Tongu constituency in the Volat region gave the challenge when he was addressing participants of the Ghana Tertiary Students Leadership Conference on the theme, “Students Leadership: A Factor For National Development” at the Central University, Moitso in Accra.

In his address, he also observed that student leadership is an important contributor to national development through the implementation of youth sensitive policies and programs thereby charging the youth to be proactive in using their skills and abilities in solving national problems. He cited the National Service Scheme (NSS) and the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) as laudable initiatives from student leaders towards the development of education in the country.

He also noted that the world is moving towards youth leadership adding that it is high time the youth started unleashing their leadership skills and potential to take over the leadership force of the country. The MP however lamented that despite the importance of students leaders in nation building, government has not put in place any mechanism or body appropriate for the grooming and development of youths and youth leaders in the country.

For his part, the President of the Full Gospel Church International, Bishop Samuel Noi Mensah also urged the youth to be led by their life visions since vision is the driver of success. He said a visionary leader or person is the one who identifies societal needs and translate his or her potentials into fulfilling those needs in the face of challenges. The Bishop therefore entreated the youth not to give up on their dreams and visions even when situations and conditions become though.

This, he said is necessary because one’s achievement of goals and visions goes a long way to have impact on the people around him or her and the general society. “Leaders and vision is about the people … every vision you have must be people centered”, he said.

Bishop Noi Mensah further noted that “the greatest disaster for a society, organization, or nation is not the absence of a leader but a leader without vision.” The founder of the Ghana Tertiary Students Leaders Conference, Richmond Anim Damoah said the conference was aimed at developing and empowering leaders “who will lead with integrity, creativity and innovation and vision.” Mr. Anim Damoa who doubles as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Echo of Leadership Africa, observed that the conference which was started two years ago is geared towards becoming the platform for building competent leaders across the country.

“This program is envisioned to becoming to becoming the biggest platform for leadership development across the various tertiary institutions in Ghana and to also create a mentorship and guidance platform for the next generation of leaders”, he noted.

Mr. Anim Damoa prayed the older generation to serve as mentors and open their doors to the younger so that they could learn from them. The conference was also attended by the former Rector of GIMPA, Professor Stephen Adei and the President of the Central University, Professor Kwesi Yankah.