President John Dramani Mahama has assured management and students of the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) in Tarkwa that government will support the institution to enable it become a center of excellence.
He said the Ghana National Petroleum Corperation has already budgeted two million dollars to develop the University’s petroleum engineering department into a school of petroleum studies.
President Mahama said this when he visited the management and students of the University as part of his two-day tour of the Western Region.
The President’s delegation include Dr. Kwabena Adjei, Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr. Johnson Asiedu Nketia, General Secretary of the NDC, Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Deputy Minister of Education, Mr. Ebenezer Teye Addo, Western Regional Minister, Dr. Tony Aubynn, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, and Mrs. Christina Kobinah, Municipal Chief Executive of Tarkwa Nsuaem,
President Mahama emphasized that government has keen interest in the activities of UMaT because it is one of the public universities that gives value for money spent.
On the new site project that the university intends to develop, the President said government will collaborate with officials of the school to look for funds to start the project.
He congratulated officials of the institution for the hard work and sacrifices they have made in lifting the standard of the university.
President. Mahama appealed to the academic community to embrace the National Research Fund so that Ghana can make a difference in terms of research.
Professor Jerry Kuma, Vice Chancellor of the University, expressed gratitude to the President, adding that through the government, the institution can boast of a laboratory that is currently the most up-to -date among universities offering petroleum engineering programme.
He said in an attempt to proactively respond to government’s call to absorb as many qualified West African Senior School Certificate Examination applicants as a result of the two cohorts of Senior High School graduates and due to the slow pace of work on a 740 bed, double four storey hostel under construction, the university has secured a commercial loan to complete the hostel come August this year.
Prof. Kuma called on government to support the smaller universities to expand their facilities to help them catch up with the other public universities.
Mr. Okudzeto Ablakwa added that government has provided 16,000 modern chairs for tertiary institutions, out of which UMaT has received 1,000 pieces. He thanked government for been supportive to the Education Ministry.