First Female Vice Chancellor Inducted into Office


By David Alan Painstil Cape Coast

The University of Cape Coast (UCC) became the centre of attraction, for thousands of people from all walks of life, as they gathered in the university’s science auditorium to witness the induction of the first female Vice Chancellor of a state university in the country, Professor Jane Naana Opoku Agyemang.

The University Primary Cadet Corps and Regimental Band, heralded the occasion with a brilliant cadet display, as the students cheered them on.

The procession, led by the Chancellor of the university, Sir Sam Jonah, former president of AngloGold Ashanti Company, entered the auditorium, which was filled to capacity.

In his welcome address, Sir Jonah indicated that the UCC would never cease to impress, as it has made history in transferring power from a male outgoing Vice Chancellor, Prof Emmanuel Adow-Obeng, to a female Vice Chancellor, Prof Opoku Agyemang.

“Once again UCC is offering a fine example of how power can be transferred from one administration to the other. In 87 days time, the people of Ghana would vote for a new administration. It is our hope and prayer that the processes will be free, fair, transparent and peaceful,” he said, attracting large applause from the crowd.

According to Sir Jonah, who inducted Prof Opoku Agyemang into office, the woman has joined an exclusive club of female vice chancellors on the continent, and in the world, and that he was proud to be the first Chancellor to preside over that groundbreaking event.

“Naana, you have certainly earned your stripes; you have exhibited great courage; you have simply refused to accept status quo, which imposes unfair disadvantages on the role of members of your gender in all endeavours of life. Indeed you have shattered the glass ceiling, and today you have done more for the future of members of your gender,” Sir Jonah described Prof. Opoku Agyemang.

Sir Jonah revealed that nobody challenged the nomination of Prof. Agyemang, and that alone, indicated that she was qualified for the job.

Sir Jonah also praised Prof. Adow-Obeng, for his immense contribution towards the development of the UCC, which has led to the astronomical increase of students from 8,959 in 2001, to about 40,000 in 2008, including 21, 489 distance learners across the country.

In her acceptance speech, the 56 year-old former Dean of Graduates Studies and Research thanked the University Council for the confidence reposed in her, and promised to run an open and transparent administration.

She also promised to establish a museum at the university, to preserve successes of Ghanaian personalities and Africans in the Diaspora, as a means of telling the African story.

Prof. Agyemang promised to expand scholarships for graduate students, in order to motivate them to bring out innovative ideas for the development of the country.

Mr. Isaac Ohene was also inducted into office, as the new Registrar of the university.

Present at the event were Prof. Dominic Fobih, Minister of Education, Science and Sports, Papa Owusu Ankomah, Trade and Industry Minister, Nana Ato Arthur, Central Regional Minister and Osabarima Kwesi Atta II, Omanhen of the Oguaa Traditional Area.

Others were Nana Pra Agyinsem, former Council of State Member and Nana Kodwo Kru, Omanhen of the Komenda Traditional Area, as well as Vice Chancellors from other universities.

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