Ignatius Baffuor-Awuah

Mr. Ignatius Baffuor-Awuah, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations has indicated government’s determinations to build the local economy such that, Ghanaians will have the confidence to stay in the country.

According to him, “Ghanaians will have jobs to do, not just jobs but decent jobs that will actually accord them the rights of a worker and also earn them incomes, which are living incomes. That is what the President is committed to.”

He added that, whilst the process is still on the way, there will be the need to regulate the system, and the Migration Centre would be the best link to offer advice to Ghanaians who want to do proper migration to Germany and other countries.

He was speaking at the brief commissioning ceremony of the Ghanaian-German Centre for Jobs, Migration and Reintegration, together with the German President, Frank-Walter Steinmeier and the Secretary of State of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Dr. Friedrich Kitschelt, in Accra on Wednesday at the GNAT Heights at Ridge.

The Minister however said, Ghana would continue to tap the knowledge and expertise of countries like Germany in technical, vocational, educational training, medicine, and renewable energy “until we are able to build our local capacities”.

Mr. Baffuor-Awuah assured that, “we will be committed to our part of the agreement to ensure that we make Ghanaians interested in Ghana, and stay in Ghana and work in Ghana.”

The Centre, housed in the building of the GNAT Heights at Ridge, which is a cooperative joint venture between the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations and the GIZ he said, would serve as a point of contact for people looking for prospects in Ghana and also offer individual counselling for returnees who needs support with their social and occupational reintegration.

Adding that, Ghanaians in search of vocational training and employment opportunities can also visit the Centre for assistance as it would present unique opportunities and access to networks of German cooperation and other organisations.

“The Centre will be a centre of excellence that will deepen the collaboration between Ghana and Germany. We are actually taking our level of cooperation to a different level altogether, a very high level.

It will be a centre where Ghanaians who have travelled out and for one reason or the other will want to come back home, will come and seek advice as to how best they can take advantage of the opportunities locally,” Mr. Baffuor-Awuah emphasised.

Meanwhile, he explained that, due to Ghana’s lower income levels, people would always like to move to places of higher income earning, thus, many Ghanaians were seen going to Europe and other countries for economic reasons.

Adding that, that venture exposed the people to so many risks, since some often did their travelling through unapproved routes through the desert and the Mediterranean, with some losing their lives by citing the recent Libya issue, where some migrants were being subjected to inhumane treatment, which President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has totally condemned.

Relatively, the Secretary of State of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Dr. Friedrich Kitschelt said, the Centre would be operated under the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Ghana.

Dr. Kitschelt said, over the many years of cooperation with Ghana, Germany had invested about €2b in building a sustainable economic future for Ghana. However, he said in the last two years, another €156m had been added to offer broad-based opportunities for Ghanaian residents and returnees.

Moreover, returnees who voluntarily returned to Ghana, would be assisted, saying “Nobody returning to Ghana will return as a loser.” Adding that, information would be provided to Ghanaians on the proper way of legal migration.

Also at the ceremony was Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, who was described as a “German Returnee” for his well integration into the Ghanaian system and leading the setting up of the Cardiothoracic Centre, Ghana’s foremost Heart Centre at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital.

By:Sammy Adjei/Newsghana.com.gh


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