He thanked the Minister for the unwavering support of his country, Togo, to the WASCAL Programme, and thanked them for hosting the Master Research Programme on Climate Change and Human Security, stressing particularly the key importance of this Programme for WASCAL Institution as a whole and then put in a new request : that of having two (2) key meetings back to back in the 3rd week of September in Togo, ie. The Board Council and the Ministerial Council to be hosted back to back in Togo. Next, he left the floor for Dr. J. Dery to stress some of the key contributions of the Republic of Togo to the foundation of WASCAL.
Taking the floor, the Board Chairman highlighted the key contributions of Togo to the Programme that earned the country a special place in the history of WASCAL:
- The constitution / the birth document was signed in Togo in February 2012 in the presence of the Prime Minister;
- The first Chair of the Ministerial Council of WASCAL was the Minister of Higher Education of Togo;
- The first WASCAL Ministerial Council was held in Lomé.
- The first Board meeting was held in Lomé; and
- Togo is the first Country to pay its contribution to WASCAL.
In conclusion, Dr. Dery said Togo is very committed to WASCAL and WASCAL history cannot be written without Togo. Dr. Dery later on his turn, requested Togo, on behalf of WASCAL, to host the 11th Board meeting and the 3rd Ministerial Council in the 3rd week of September 2017.
The Executive Director and his delegation visited the Master Research Programme on Climate Change and Human Security. At the MRPCCHS Centre, the delegation exchanged with the administration about the program, it successes and challenges before discussing with the current batch of students preparing to depart to the fields, where the Executive Director and the students exchanged about their takes on the Programme.The MRP-CCHS students expressed the challenge of pursuing a PhD degree after earning a Master’s degree focused on human security and Climate Change. Considering the job market and given the dearth of such a pointed Programme all over the world, they strongly wish that WASCAL upgrade the MRP-CCHS into a PhD programme. On his turn, the Executive Director encouraged them to keep eyes and mind open because they are not specifically trained for their home country and want them to keep the WASCAL network alive because education and job related opportunities can be channeled through this connexion.
At the Presidency of the University of Lomé, Prof Kokou introduced the delegation to the President and his Associates, and presented the head of the University of Lomé to the visiting delegation. Then, the Executive Director on spot stated his delight to be in Togo and at the Presidency of the University of Lomé because Togo is a special country among the ten (10) west African countries of WASCAL – Germany being the 11th country – He informed the President that WASCAL is working hard to bring two more African countries – Cape Verde and Guinea – to ratify WASCAL Constitution before the end of 2017. ” I will like to visit the Ministry and the Presidency because of the Uniqueness of Togo in the Programme ”, he stated. He thanked the President of the University. Prof, Dodzi K. Kokoroko for hosting the MRP-CCHS and inform his team that he will visit Ouagadougou, Burkina-Faso, the following week, to sign the memorandum of the 11th graduate school, Climate Change and Informatics in that country.
The Chair of the Board reviewed the list of the outstanding contributions of Togo to the life of WASCAL and thanked the country for the opportunity it granted WASCAL before putting in the request for Togo to host the Board meeting and the Council of Ministers. He thanked him for the facility, and fully acknowledged Togo’s contribution through the action of local board chair.
Professor Dodzi K. Kokoroko said how much the UL was honored to have the delegation and host the WASCAL MRP-CCHS because Climate Change is a common concern. In light of Togo’s past record in the WASCAL history, the President strongly urged them to come for both meetings in September 2017. To crown it all, the President of the University of Lomé asserted that he is fully prepared to make WASCAL a success in Togo.
The ceremony was closed off with the presentation of a symbolic gift to the members of the delegation by Prof. Dodzi K. Kokoroko.
The delegation headed back to Accra Friday afternoon after the two day successful courtesy visit.