Aker Energy Ghana, a major operator of the Deepwater Tano Cape Three Point (DWT/CTP) Block offshore the Western Region, has targetted boosting the educational needs of Ghanaians through its social investment initiatives.
The focus is in line with the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) module, aimed at addressing some pressing social intervention issues faced by communities within its operational jurisdiction.
Despite some existing oil and gas companies operating along the coastal belt of the Western Region being already involved in similar corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects, Aker Energy brings to bear new and more enhanced CRS modules meant to add value to the existing initiatives of its partners – especially the GNPC foundation and LUKOIL, which are benefitting the citizenry who are in dire need of the services directed at the needy and vulnerable in society.
Aker Energy, apart from its numerous CSR projects in its short period of operations in Ghana after taking over from HESS Petroleum between 2017/2018, has worked hard to improve upon the good legacy left behind by its predecessor in terms of supporting the educational sector.
The company as part of its commitment toward the educational sector recently donated an amount US$4.5million to aid in building the human resource base of the oil and gas sector to assist the government of Ghana through the Petroleum Commission.
The package is meant to help build the capacities of young Ghanaians to equip and enhance their skills in the oil and gas sector.
The Accelerated Oil and Gas Capacity-building (AOGC) Programme, which is an initiative by the government of Ghana, was mainly designed for and directed at enhancing the capacities and expertise of indigenous Ghanaians in the oil and gas sector.
The programme will run for five years and seek to train individuals in various technical and vocational areas; and also build the capacity of educational institutions to be able to train students and award internationally-recognised training certificates.
According to Aker Energy, the donation toward the AOGC Programme will serve as the benchmark for more youth to be engaged in learning and enhancing their skills in the oil and gas sector, thus bridging the gap for indigenous Ghanaians who have been relegated over the years in terms of the sector.
It can be recalled that the government of Ghana through the Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibille Jnr., lauded Aker Energy for its foresight toward investing in the education of Ghanaians.
He added that the package will help to provide business and management training for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), and ensure continuous professional development for employees of various public institutions connected to the oil and gas industry.
The company has further assured the people of Ghana that it will continue supporting key industry players, especially the Petroleum Commission, to certify vocational and technical experts for the youth desiring to work in the oil and gas industry – to prepare them for jobs in the industry.
Aker Energy’s Country Manager, Mr. Jan Helge Skogen, disclosed in a recently-held stakeholders’ meeting for key players and regulators in the oil and gas industry in Accra that: “Under the AOGC, we will seek support from and utilise Ghanaian educational institutions to increase competency levels through training of local trainers’ programmes”.
Aker Energy, apart from supporting the government of Ghana, has also contributed immensely in the educational sector – and has thus supported making educational life easier for brilliant but needy students along the six coastal Metropolitan Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) of the Western Region with scholarship packages, to further their education from the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) to the Senior High School level.
The scholarship, dubbed the Aker-GNPC Scholars programme, partnered with LUKOIL, Fueltrade and GNPC between the 2017/2018 academic years – supporting over eight hundred (800) underprivileged beneficiaries to continue their education at the secondary level.
Aker Energy, according to management, through its partners is looking forward to improving the quota to benefit more underprivileged students for the 2019/2020 academic year intake.
The Aker-GNPC Scholars Support programme is also expected to be extended to the tertiary level, to enable beneficiary students pursue courses in technical and non-technical subject areas – with some now capable of going through the AOGC programme to be offered university education in Scotland and Norway.
The company also featured as the Platinum or Headline sponsor of the 2019 Fourth annual Western Region Independence Day Inter-District JHS Quiz Competition among the eleven MMDAs in the region, with Tarkwa Nsuaem emerging as the champions.
The Country Manager of Aker Energy, Jan Skogen, further called on all stakeholders responsible for the sector to support the company to achieve its direction to adding to the national quota.