The implementation of the Free Senior High School policy has earned President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo an honorary Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership degree.
The honorary recognition was conferred on him by the University of Cape Coast (UCC) at a special congregation held in his honour on Saturday, May 29, 2021.
President Akufo-Addo in his acceptance speech lauded the achievement of the policy since its implementation and pledged his government’s unflinching commitment towards ensuring a better Ghana.
“This accolade is being conferred on me because of the introduction and acceptance of the Free SHS policy promoted by my government, which has expanded dramatically access to education; enabling hundreds of thousands of young men and women from all corners of our country to go to Senior High School.
“This is the first honour I have received from an institution in my own country, which makes it understandably very special for me … and I assure all of you that I will do my very best to uphold the higher standards associated with this award.”
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo becomes the 40th recipient of an honorary degree and the second President in Ghana after former President John Agyekum Kufour to receive a degree from the University of Cape Coast.
Present at the ceremony were Central Regional Minister Kwamena Duncan, Minister of Education Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum and many others.
Honorary degrees recognise the exceptional contributions of honourees to the development of society in various fields.
The Chancellor of UCC, Dr. Sam Jonah during his speech described the president’s contribution to the country’s educational sector as “outstanding” and the “most momentous decision taken by any leader of the country”.
He indicated that the Free SHS policy has helped many needy students who hitherto wouldn’t have gotten the opportunity to attend secondary school.
“This policy has expanded access to Senior High School and paved the way for many young Ghanaians who otherwise would not have been able to afford SHS education. The financial burden lifted off some parents and guardians cannot be overemphasized. Without a shadow of a doubt, the free SHS policy is a bold decision and one of the best social intervention policies ever taken by any leader of this country,” he emphasized.
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast, Professor Johnson Nyarko Boampong, also stated that the President is highly qualified for the honourary degree and deserves it.