Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin

Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin has called for improved conditions of service and the introduction of incentives for teachers, particularly those assigned to rural areas for equitable quality education in line with the sustainable development goal (SDG 4).

This call comes amid recent industrial actions by pre-tertiary teacher unions over the government’s failure to pay book and data online allowances, deprived area allowances, assessment allowances, and CPD adjustments.

The poor condition of service of teachers contributes to the significant attrition rate.

Many rural communities continue to record persistent shortage of educators.

Last year, Dr. Christian Addai-Poku, Registrar of the National Teaching Council, revealed that over 16,000 Ghanaian teachers applied for positions in the UK’s Department of Education.

 By June 13, 2023, 10,000 of these applicants, holding Ghana Teacher Licenses, had been certified to work in the UK without further assessment. This exodus compounds the high attrition rate in the teaching profession in Ghana.

Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin believes that providing infrastructure and laptops to schools is ineffective if there are no quality teachers to utilize these resources to teach students.

He advocates for special incentives for teachers posted to rural areas.

“The child must have a table, desk, chair and get a good teacher. If you give the children computers, provide the infrastructure, and still do not have quality teachers to teach them, the performance of the students will not be better. In the olden days, teachers taught many here in the villages and were able to compete with their peers in Tema, Accra, and other places”

He added “We must improve the condition of service of teachers. I am advocating for teachers to be provided Incentives, and have better accommodations to enable them to stay and teach the students well. It is only education that can accelerate national development”.

The overlord of Akyem Abuakwa touted the Free SHS program and urged parents to take advantage of it to provide secondary education for their children.

“It is through education that our children can become successful. That is why God revealed to Nana Addo[President] to introduce Free SHS. So that poverty will not be a limitation to access education. Hence wherever money is he will find it to support the program. I’m 74 years old, I don’t know where this policy has become more beneficial than in Ghana. All these children have been enrolled. But don’t just go to the school, learn hard”.

He also cautioned against teenage pregnancy and irresponsible parenting, which lead to an increase in child neglect and school dropouts.

Okyenhene said this during a Royal Durbar organized by the Benkum Division in honor of his 25th-anniversary celebration on the stool.

Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin assured attendees at Begoro that a new chief would soon be installed to occupy the five-year vacant stool to help facilitate development in the area.

He underscored the importance of community stability and warned against land and chieftaincy disputes in the Fanteakwa area, part of the Benkum Division of the Akyem Abuakwa traditional area.

He urged successful citizens of Begoro globally to return to their roots to help in the development of the town.

The Benkum Divisional durbar is the second of the five divisional royal durbars scheduled to be held in honor of Okyenhene’s 25th-anniversary celebration on the accession to the Ofori Panin stool under the theme: “25 Years of Sustainable Leadership and Service to Humanity.”

Benkum is the second largest division within the Akyem Abuakwa State structure, encompassing over 300 towns and villages.

In the Akyem Abuakwa state hierarchy, the Benkumhene, otherwise known as the Fanteakwahene, is the commander and chief of the army’s left wing, with his permanent residence at Begoro, the division’s capital.

The Benkum Division occupies a very large area of land and was historically the bastion of the western division of the Akyem Abuakwa Army, exposed to hostile states more than any other division.

The Benkum Division shares borders with Asante, Kwahu, Akwamu, Krobo, and parts of the Volta Region.

The Benkumhene’s dress and coronet are the same as the Nifahene’s, and both are equal in rank.

 In parades, the Benkumhene is third to the Adontenhene. The Benkumhene belongs to the Royal Asona clan, with principal chiefs in this division including the Odauhene of Osenase and Otwereso, who are equal in rank to the Benkumhene.

The rest of the principal chiefs are the chiefs of Apinaman, Osino (also known as Mumuadu Sei), Suhum, Amanase, Sawirako, and Apedwa, among others. The Benkumhene and Begorohene, however, take precedence in all matters, civil and military, and are the acknowledged heads of the division.

Source: Ghana/Starrfm.com.gh/Kojo Ansah