President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has presented awards to 72 students who excelled in the 2021 and 2022-year Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) at this year’s President’s Independence Day Awards.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, which had the students drawn from the 16 regions of the country, President Akufo-Addo said he gets excited whenever he interacts with brilliant students.
That, he said, is because he always has the assurance and hope that the future of this country is in safe hands, and inevitably, “the leadership of this country would be in your hands one day.”
“It is a heavy responsibility”, the President told the students, adding: “you would be part of the story of whether this country will remain somewhat dependent on foreign assistance or would be a self-reliant nation.”
President Akufo-Addo urged the students not to allow their current success to get to their heads “because this is only the beginning. Continue to work hard in other to maintain your standards.”
“Know that you can go as far as you want by remaining diligent, hardworking, and holding on to a strong moral base,” he advised.
Honesty and integrity, he stated, are important values in any work and assured that the government places great importance on access to quality education for all Ghanaian children.
He also assured that the government would continue to invest hugely in educating Ghanaian children to secure the country’s future.
To the school heads and staff, both teaching and non-teaching, through whose hard work and direction these children have made it to this far, President Akufo-Addo appealed to them to continue to work harder and help exploit the students’ potential.
“You are an important part of their life stories and their successes or otherwise would be a reflection on you.”
As the country prepares to celebrate 66 years of independence from colonial rule, on the theme: ‘Our Unity, Our Strength, Our Purpose,’ President Akufo-Addo urged all Ghanaians to “eschew all acts of divisiveness and self-centredness tendencies” which have the potential to retard the country’s forward match.
Despite the country’s enormous challenges, the President urged all to acknowledge that “we have made positive strives and have the humility to appreciate that we still have a long way to go.”
The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Adutwum, said there were 830, 000 students enrolled in High Schools across the country when the Free SHS Policy began in 2017.
But this year alone, there has been a record placement of over 500,000 students who have found schools and are anxiously getting ready to enrol at the various SHS schools across the country.
He commended the award winners and expressed gratitude to the headmasters and teachers who supported the students to achieve the feat.
The President’s Independence Day Awards, since its inception in 1993, continues to provide scholarships each year to young brilliant students between the ages of 14 and 19 from all the regions of Ghana.
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD