Dr. Nana Ato Arthur, Head of Local Government Service
The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH Ghana, has launched an alumni association of returning experts to streamline the activities of members towards the development of the country.
This is to be carried out through the championing of interests of members in a not-for-profit and non-political manner while improving liaison between returning experts with an interest in national development.
It is also to contribute to the sustainable development of Ghana by promoting networking, training, research, policy dialogue and interest in national development issues.
Returning expert is a term given to a Ghanaian who has either lived, worked, or studied in Germany and returned to Ghana through the facilitation of the Programme Migration & Diaspora (PMD) which was started in Ghana in 1994 by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation & Development.
So far, approximately 1,000 Ghanaian returning experts across different professions have benefitted from the initiative which is being implemented by GIZ.
At a ceremony to launch Returning Experts Alumni Network Ghana (RANG), the Head of Local Government Service, Dr. Nana Ato Arthur, who is a returning expert, said that members have a responsibility of helping the youth appreciate the need to travel and return to the country to serve in spite of existing hardships.
“Even though the desire by young Ghanaians to go abroad to study and acquire skills has increased, the desire to come home and support the development of the nation after their education and training keeps dwindling,” he observed.
Even though migration for greener pastures and better education has been a main contributor to brain-drain in the country, he noted how living and acquiring knowledge outside the shores has helped shaped the acumen of personalities who were instrumental in colonial and post-independence era of the country.
He, therefore, urged members to leverage on their connection with the diaspora to support government’s initiatives for Ghanaians in the diaspora.
Head of Migration Projects, GIZ Ghana, Benjamin Woesten said that the believe in collective power which serves as a catalyst for greater impact should motivate members of the alumni association to stay united and put resources together for the better good.
“Nation building through alumni associations, for instance cannot be negated, primarily because it is a healthy professional platform where intellectuals of diverse backgrounds meet to discuss and exchange ideas, mentor the next generation, and network,” he said.
By Issah Mohammed