The Vice-President, Alhaji Mahamudu Bawumia has assured Engineers in the country of government’s unflinching support and team up with them when required in their quest to industrialize Ghana.
The Vice-President gave this assurance in a speech read on his behalf by the Minister in Charge of Public Sector Reforms, Joseph Cudjoe at the closing banquet of the 7th edition of Africa Engineering Week and 5th Africa Engineering Conference at Marriott hotel, Airport, Accra on Thursday, 7th October, 2021.
Speaking under the theme of the conference: ‘Engineering, Inter-African Trade and the Sustainable Development Goals”, Dr Bawumia said “in Ghana today, we have adopted the Sustainable Development Goals in all we do. The budgeting cycle is linked to the SDGs. We are currently soliciting inputs to develop our national budget for the period 2022 to 2025”.
Alhaji Bawumia explained that the Continental Free Trade Area, which secretariat Ghana is privileged to host, enhances the role of trade in economic transformation. He added that Africa has a unique problem of creating jobs overseas through imports whilst our exports too create jobs abroad because we are unable to add value to our local raw materials before exporting.
He said that as part of government’s efforts in fast tracking the industrialization agenda, a number of initiatives which require strong inputs of engineering practitioners have been put in place. Notable among them are One-District, One-Factory and One-Village One-Dam initiatives.
He therefore tasked Engineers in Africa to create an African Brand by harmonizing standards in Engineering education, products and services. This, he said, can be done by working with relevant bodies towards the integration of the continent through better air-links, roads and digital infrastructure.
The Vice President also congratulated Ing. Carlien Bou-Chedid, the first Ghanaian woman ever to occupy the enviable position as the President of the Federation of African Engineering Organization (FAEO).
The President of FAEO, Ing. Mrs. Carlien Bou-Chedid, on her part, said, Africa will require innovative solutions for its development by creating awareness of intellectual property rights. She explained that bringing innovation to the market requires systemic change in education, patenting and funding. She said in all these, governments must be prepared to fund research. She also said young engineers need guidance and that the engineers’ forum is an important avenue to develop future engineers. She called for the need to expand access to digital infrastructure and access to finance for women in engineering.
Fraternal messages were delivered by Engr. Mustafa Balarabe Shehu, the Executive Vice-President of the World Federation of Engineering (WFEO), Presidents of West African Federation of Engineering Organization (WAFEO), North African Federation of Engineering Organization (NAFEO), Eastern African Federation of Engineering (EAFEO), Central African Federation of Engineering Organization (CAFEO) and Southern African Federation of Engineering Organization (SAFEO). The President of Nigerian Society of Engineers also delivered a fraternal message as the member country with the highest number of delegates at this year’s conference.
The President of the host Engineering institution, the Ghana Institution of Engineering, Ing. Rev. Prof. Charles Anum Adams, welcomed the guests to the banquet and thanked FAEO for choosing Ghana as the host nation for the 7th edition of Africa Engineering Week and 5th Africa Engineering Conference.
The Conference was under the chairmanship of Eng. Martin Manuhwa, Immediate Past President of FAEO, who in his closing remarks told young engineers to aspire to inspire before they expire. He congratulated GhIE and the organizing team for putting up such a wonderful work to host the events flawlessly.
He noted that Ghana’s conference is the best managed ever in the history of FAEO, even with a very late approval for GhIE to host.