President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says going forward, Ghana’s developmental policies will no longer depend on the support of the advanced world.
He observed the over-dependence on foreign assistance has not worked for Ghana over the years, and it will not work.
Addressing a cnference on bridging the technology gap at the Peduase Valley Resort Monday, President Akufo-Addo said the time has come for Ghana to develop policies that would make the country self-reliant, less dependent on foreign capital, technology and influence.
This, the President said, is the vision of his administration.
“It is important to state that we can no longer continue to make policies for our country on the bases of whatever support the technologically advanced world can give us. It has not worked and it will not work,” President Akufo Addo said.
He was speaking under the theme: “Bridging the Technology Gap towards ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ and Youth Employment.”
The President noted that his vision of a “Ghana Beyond Aid” is to build a strong, robust economy capable of generating a dignified, prosperous existence for its people, and banishing the scepter of poverty.
He indicated that his administration through the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, has developed a science and technology framework that has seven pillars.
This policy agenda, the President said, will help bridge the technology gap between Ghana and the rest of the world.
He mentioned science, technology and innovation as the first pillar which he said will receive the constant attention of government.
Consequent to that, the President has established a Presidential Advisory on Science Technology and Innovation (PASTI) as an advisory body to advise the President on matters to do with science, technology and innovation.
The second, he said, is a coordination of all sectorial activities involving science, technology and innovation through an inter-ministerial coordinating council on Science, Technology and Innovation.
The third pillar, according to the President, is the recognition of the need for strong partnership between government, public research institutions, the scientific academic community and industry.
Also, there are plans of raising funding for research and development to a significant level. Thus, a minimum of 1% of Ghana’s GDP will be applied to research and development in the short to medium term and increased to 2.5% in the long term.
Government is also set to target a more literate society through education, he said.
The sixth pillar is that legislation for the science, technology and innovation programme of the country must be given statutory backing. To that end, a bill is being drafted to be laid before Parliament for approval.
There is also a strong focus on the development of strategic technology areas. Critical areas of technology which are essential to the country’s development will be targeted.
President of the Ghana Institution of Engineers, Steve Amoaning-Yankson, observed in his welcome address that the foreign expertise coming into the country to offer technological solutions that can be handled locally by Ghanaians must be halted if the country is serious about bridging the technology gap between her and the rest of the world.
The Conference was organized by MasterCard Foundation in collaboration with the Ghana Institution of Engineers and the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation.