Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, the Minister of Education, says government recognises the capacity of the film, television, and the creative arts industry to generate jobs and, thus, was determined to support it to achieve these goals.
He said the Ministry would support the National Film and Television Institute (NAFTI) to ensure that it contributed significantly to the growth of the creative arts in Ghana and Africa.
Dr Prempeh said this in a speech read on his behalf by Professor Mohammed Salifu, the Executive Director of the National Council on Tertiary Education (NCTE) at the 14th Congregation ceremony of NAFTI.
He commended the Institute for the great strides it had made in the capital-intensive sector despite the challenges it faced with financing over the years.
He urged management to continue to position the school as the best higher educational institution for training in film and television.
Dr Prempeh highlighted the importance of the digital media environment such as having media producers who were digitally literate and had good knowledge and understanding of digital production techniques.
“…Not only that, to produce enlightening content, they should be critical thinkers, who are grounded in the liberal arts such that they can reflect and comment critically on the nation and its culture,” he stated.
Dr Prempeh said he was confident that NAFTI was well placed to offer that professional and quality digital training that would bring Ghana’s broadcasting industry in the modern global age.
He urged the graduates to be guided by high moral principles in the presentation of media content and be sensitive to the development of the Ghanaian cultural identity.
Nana Kwaw Ansah, Chief Executive Officer of TV Africa, bemoaned the incidence of media production in Ghana reinforcing some negative superstitions by the content they put out.
He noted that the audio-visual media was a very powerful tool countries could use to develop and urged the graduates to produce relevant stories that could take Ghana and Africa out of the ‘gutters’.
“There’s no short cut. How relevant are your stories going to be to enable us to shift from the gutters in which we find ourselves; it is very important. Ghana and Africa are being swallowed by superstition and a number of our performers have engaged themselves in following what is not helping our development: superstition,” he said.
Professor Kofi Agyekum, the Dean of the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana, who represented the Vice Chancellor, challenged the graduates to prove themselves on the job market.
He tasked them to demonstrate high standards of performance, commitment to hard work, integrity, discipline and Godly leadership.
“You’re going out as ambassadors of two great institutions, therefore, let society see you as great leaders, with great ideas meant for great things. Brighten the corner where you are,” he said.
The Institute graduated 195 students comprising 54 Degree students, 14 Diploma students and 126 with certificates.
Awards were presented to students who had excelled in their various courses.