UHAS held its maiden International Day celebration at the Professor Kofi Anyidoho Auditorium in Ho. The colourful programme unfolded on 23 June under the theme: “International Community: A catalyst for UHAS Growth”.
The Vice Chancellor, Professor John O. Gyapong informed the gathering that the promotion of UHAS international relations is a core part of the UHAS strategic policy. He recounted that UHAS has set up more than 20 international collaborations in the areas of faculty and curriculum development, infrastructure development and student exchange programmes. He enumerated the giant contributions of past and present members of the international community, particularly the contributions of the Cuban faculty to the establishment of the School of Medicine. He also acknowledged the efforts of Nigerian faculty with the School of Sports and Exercise Medicine, School of Pharmacy, and School of Public Health.
The VC said that UHAS currently has 25 international faculty from Cuba, Nigeria, Cameroon and India and said that due to a few challenges, UHAS has only five foreign students. He appealed for collaborations with stakeholders to aid in attracting more foreign students to UHAS. He also pledged management’s continuous efforts to create an enabling working environment that promotes cultural tolerance and cross-cultural learning among different nationalities.
The Special Guest of Honour, Ambassador Gambo Yusef Hamza, Deputy Nigerian High Commissioner, narrated the historical antecedents that united Ghana and Nigeria before and after colonization, calling on both governments of Ghana and Nigeria to abolish the requirements of work and residence permits for their nationals. He also made a passionate call to Nigerians to be law-abiding residents of Ghana.
Honourable Dr. Archibald Yao Letsa, Volta Regional Minister, acknowledged the importance of the International Day celebration, saying that UHAS is supposed to be a universal city. He pledged the Volta Regional Co-ordinating Council’s support in addressing some of the needs of the UHAS international community.
Representatives of the Cuban and Chinese embassies read goodwill messages. Members of the UHAS community and guests were treated to a colourful spectacle of rich cultural performances, history, cuisine, music and dance from Cuba, Nigeria, Cameroon, China and India presented by members of these communities and their families.
The maiden celebration was graced by some high-profile guests including officials from the Nigerian High Commission in Ghana; leadership of the Nigerian and Cuban Communities in Ghana; Cuba Brigade; and a team from the Nantong Sijian Construction Group Company Limited. Various regional security heads and officials also attended the programme. Also in attendance were the registrar, deans, directors, heads of department, faculty, staff and students of UHAS.