*As Council gets new chairman
By Elizabeth Osayande
One of the crucial recommendations at the 69th annual meeting of the governing board of the West African Examinations Council, WAEC, was the need for Ministers of Education in member-states to get a forum where issues on education would be discussed.
The member-states are Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
In a statement by the board signed by Public Affairs, Head of WAEC, Accra, Ghana, Adulujo Abiodun, the Council at virtual week-long event, held from March 22 to March 26, approved the election of Prof. Ato Essuman from Ghana as the 20th Chairman of the sub-regional organisation for a three-year tenure.
Professor Kwasi Opoku-Amankwaas was elected Vice-Chairman of Council for the one-year period.
Parts of the deliberations, recommendations and reports during the 69th annual meeting were “creation of a forum for regular interactions among the Ministers of Education of the member-countries in view of the benefits of such collaborative platforms for the development of education.
“Appreciation of all stakeholders and the call for more collaboration in the fight against all forms of examination fraud in the sub-region;
“The receiving of Registrar’s annual report on the activities of the headquarters and five national offices, ratification of decisions and presentations and considerations of action plan by the headquarters and national offices for their operations in the current year; among others.”
In his keynote address, President of Ghana, Akufo-Addo described WAEC as a dominant institution in the West African sub-region which had consistently produced leaders in various fields of endeavour and a workforce to drive the economy.
He commended WAEC for regularly generating reports and statistics to guide the member countries in policy formulation and implementation.
He also congratulated the Council on the successful execution of its mandate in 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
While he expressed delight over the impressive performance of the first batch of beneficiaries of his government’s Free Senior High School Policy who sat WASSCE in 2020, President Akufu-Addo pledged on more collaboration between the government and WAEC.
…as Ghana tops Nigeria, others in 2020 WASSCE
At the formal opening of the meeting, three candidates, all from Ghana, were honoured with the WAEC International Excellence Award for their outstanding performance in WASSCE in 2020.
They were Master Cecil Tetteh Kumah (1st Prize), Master Godfred Aseda Obeng (2nd Prize) and Miss Afua Manukure Ansah (3rd Prize).
They were selected from a total of 2,122,844 candidates who sat the examination in the five-member countries. The Augustus Bandele Oyediran Award for the Best Candidate in West Africa also went to Master Cecil Tetteh Kumah.
In addition, the prestigious award of Distinguished Friend of Council was conferred on an eminent citizen of Ghana, former university lecturer and Chief Examiner, Dr. John Anum Sakey, for his outstanding contribution to the success of the work of WAEC.
The meeting also featured the 26th in the series of Annual WAEC Endowment Fund Lectures titled “Treading on Slippery Ground: Calling Education to Account”, which was delivered by Prof. Kafui Etsey of the Department of Education and Psychology, University of Cape Coast, Ghana.