The University of Education Winneba (UEW), has conferred an honourary Doctor of Letters degree on the Minister for Energy, Hon. Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh, for his services to education whilst he was Minister for Education from 2017 to 2021.
Dr. Prempeh, who is popularly known as ‘NAPO’ is the incumbent MP for Manhyia South, joined Prof. Mike Aaron Oquaye, immediate past Speaker of Parliament, for the Special Congregation of the University on its North campus for the conferment of the honourary degree on the two.
“I was privileged to attend a Special Congregation held by the University of Education Winneba, where I was conferred with an honourary doctorate degree by the University for my contribution to education in Ghana. Rt. Hon. Rev. Prof. Mike Oquaye, former Speaker of Parliament, was also in attendance as a fellow honoree.
I am eternally grateful to the University Council for this honour.
If there is one person who made this morning’s award possible, it is President Akufo-Addo. I thank him for giving me the opportunity and for having confidence in me.
Free SHS has come to stay, and with it, the promise of opportunities for all of our children, and ultimately, a huge boost in Ghana’s human resource base. I am confident that its challenges shall be surmounted.”
This brings to 24, the number of people thus honoured by the university in its history. Previous awardees include Ghanaian former heads of state H.E. Jerry John Rawlings of blessed memory and H.E John Agyekum Kufuor, former Nigerian President, General Abdulsalami Abubakar and Professor Jophus Anamuah-Mensah, former Principal, and first Vice-Chancellor of the University.
According to a citation read during the ceremony, the achievements of the education sector during Dr. Prempeh’s tenure as Education Minister included the introduction of the flagship Free SHS programme, rolling out of basic school curriculum, huge investments in technical and vocational reforms, upgrading of Colleges of Education from diploma-awarding institutions to degree-awarding University Colleges of Education together with several others including legislative and institutional reforms, together with massive infrastructural development at all levels of the education system.
In a short appreciation address by Prof. Oquaye on behalf of the two recipients, he thanked the university for this great honour and praised its role in developing the country’s human resource base, adding that education was a crucial factor in every country’s socio-economic development.
The short ceremony was attended by the Chief of Staff, Madam Akosua Frema Opare, who stood in as Special Guest of Honour for President Akufo-Addo, the Minister for Education, Hon. Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Central Regional Minister, Mrs. Justina Marigold Assan and Neenyi Ghartey VII, the Paramount Chief of the Effutu Traditional Area, among several other distinguished guests.