Achimota School has launched its 90th anniversary. The ceremony which took place on Saturday 28th January 2017 attracted “Akoras” (Old Students of Achimota School) from all walks of life and was characterized by choreography performances from current students of the school. The occasion was also used to hoist the flags of the various houses together with the school’s and national flag.
Achimota School formerly (Prince of Wales College and School, Achimota) is a co-educational boarding school founded in 1924 by Sir Frederick Gordon Guggisberg, Dr. James Emman Kwegyir Aggrey, and Rev. Alexander (Alec) Garden Fraser. It was formally opened in 1927 by Sir Frederick, then Governor of the British Gold Coast colony.
The school has educated many African leaders, including Kwame Nkrumah, Edward Akufo-Addo, Jerry John Rawlings, and John Evans Atta Mills and John Dramani Mahama all of whom are former Heads of State of Ghana. Not only has Achimota produced Heads of State for Ghana but other African Countries as well. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and Sir Dawda Jawara, the first head of state of The Gambia also passed through the walls of Achimota School.
The Assistant Head of Achimota school in charge of administration, Mr. Ebenezer G. Acquaah in his welcome address reiterated Achimota’s commitment to training students holistically to become living water to thirsty lands. He made reference to Achimotans steering affairs in diverse professions as a testament to Achimota’s success in delivering this core mandate.
“As we celebrate today and launch the 90th Anniversary of this God given school, let us be proud of who we are and who God has called us to become. Let us highlight the milestone we have achieved and seek for ways to make improvements upon areas where our lives have dimmed over the years” he added.
“Let us return to the principles and the philosophy that under guide our foundation and which triggered the growth we have attained over the years. Let us re-engage the ethos that has stimulated our efforts over the past nine decades to scale greater heights and break new frontiers. Let us aspire to quench the thirst in all aspects of our national challenges and indeed the world” Mr. Acquaah continued.
The President of the Old Achimotan Association (O.A.A.) and immediate past Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana Professor Ernest Aryeetey during the delivery of his address revealed that Achimota School has paid its dues to the nation and deserves to be celebrated.
“Achimota School helped to democratize secondary education. Today, we celebrate 90years of a period which we’ve seen many Ghanaians come from the North, South, East and West to Achimota School to gain a good secondary education. They have moved further to make a difference in the way our country runs. They’ve run the civil service, our universities and the corporate sector” he said.
He further revealed that, in as much as Achimota school has chalked many successes, it has also had its challenges.
“We as the O.A.A. have recognized that the school has difficult challenges and have decided to do whatever we can to assist the school. There are challenges on the land issues, infrastructure, human resources, and finances. The O.A.A. would do everything it can to ensure these challenges are overcome within the shortest possible period” Professor Aryeetey added.
The Chairman of the Board of governors of Achimota School, Mr. Osei Agyeman noted that the Achimota brand is a unique brand to not only Ghana and Africa but globally. He, therefore, called on all Akoras to always be mindful of the sacrifices their predecessors have made to make the Achimota brand unique. He also called on all Old Students of the School to contribute their quota towards making the celebration of the 90th anniversary a success.
Mr. Osei Agyeman officially launched the celebration of the school’s 90th anniversary which was followed by a sod cutting ceremony for the construction of an ultramodern science laboratory at a cost of about US$300,000 (GH¢1.3 million). The project is an initiative of the Old Achimotan Association (O.A.A.) under the sponsorship of Tullow Ghana.
The chosen theme to commemorate the year-long event is “Black, White, and Heart … That All May Be One”
As part of activities to mark the celebration, there will be a monthly symposia dubbed “Achimota Speaks”. This symposia is designed to share Achimotan thoughts on various aspects of national discourse guided by the theme of the celebration. There will also be several fun activities that will serve as platforms to reunite long-lost peers, friends, and family.
There will also be several fund-raising activities with the objective of raising a minimum of $1,000,000 (or the Ghana Cedi equivalent) seed money towards a wall to fence off the School and protect her from encroachment as well as other “legacy projects”.
Report by Akora Desmond Kofi Tawiah, (Ghana Institute of Journalism)