Ghana has for the past five years topped the West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) Competition for the international excellence award, WAEC announced on Thursday.
For the year 2014, all three Ghanaian candidates who participated in the award with other WAEC students, swept all the three top awards offered at that level once again.
The overall top candidate, Hasan Mickail, a former student of Ghana Secondary Technical School (GSTS) in the Western Region, who was the best candidate in the General Science programme, both at the national and international level, also won the Bandele Award for the best performing candidate in the whole of West Africa.
Ghana, Nigeria, and the Gambia participated in the 2014 WAEC examination, while Liberia and Sierra Leone, the two other WAEC countries, did not participate in the examinations due to the Ebola pandemic and a change in those countries educational system.
The Very Reverend Samuel Nmai Ollennu, the Head of National Office, WAEC, who announced this at this year’s WAEC Distinction Awards ceremony organized to honour candidates, who excelled in the May/June 2014 edition of the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) said Ghana, since the period of the SSCE and when the WASSCE was introduced has been topping in the international exams.
He said for the past four years, Ghanaian WASSCE students have continuously topped in the international Exams.
Rev Ollennu explained that for a candidate to win such awards, he or she must obtain a minimum of eight grade A1s.
Candidates, who qualified for the awards, competed at two levels, consisting of the national (home country) and international (West Africa) levels with other WAEC candidates.
At the award ceremony held in Accra, the overall top winner, Mickail and four other awardees were given various sums of money, certificates, and laptops, whilst their former schools were given plagues.
Mickail was offered a full scholarship by the Universal Merchant Bank Ghana Limited to undertake a tertiary education in any university in Ghana, while the WAEC Endowment Fund, the main sponsor of the Distinction awards gave him the cedi equivalent of 300 dollars, and the Ghana National office of WAEC gave him 700 dollars, cedi equivalent.
Other award winners were Mr Kenyah Blaykyi, formerly of St Augustine’s College, who took the second position, received the cedi equivalent of 200 dollars and 300 dollars from the WAEC Fund and the Ghana National office, WAEC, respectively. FirstBanc Ghana, a financial institution is also giving Mr Blaykyi GH¢ 2,000 as part of the package.
Henry Enninful Archibald, a former student of Mfantsipim School, won the third position and was rewarded with 200 dollars and 300 dollars from the Fund and the Ghana National Office respectively. The Enterprise Insurance Limited also gave GHC 1,000 to Mr Archibald.
Mr Elvis Okoh-Asirifi, formerly of Opoku Ware SHS in the Ashanti Region, and Ms Deborah Akosua Atuabea Attuah, a former student of Wesley Girls High School in Cape Coast, won the best candidate in business and General Arts Programmes respectively. They all received the cedi equivalent of 400 dollars each and certificates.
Rev Ollennu said by giving the awards, WAEC believed that it would be an incentive to spur the students on to work harder in future examinations and in other future endeavours.
Dr Iyi Uwadiae, the Registrar at the WAEC Council commended Ghana for the consistency in winning the awards over the past years, assuring that, in spite of the few examination malpractices, WAEC exams were ‘still valid and very reliable’.
Mr Enoch Cobbinah, the Chief Director of the Ministry of Education, who represented the Deputy Minister of Education, Mr Alex Kyeremeh, said the outstanding performances by the students indicated that ‘Ghana’s educational system is the best in the West Africa region so no one should think that our educational system is in shambles’.
-Accra, March 12, GNA – GNA