“No matter where you find yourself, take a stand that you will diligently apply yourself to defy the odds of the bell-curve of life, with conviction and ethical values. Having said that, I also believe it is better to be just okay than cut corners in search of greatness.” These were remarks made by Mr Ebenezer Twum Asante, the MTN Group Vice President for West and Central Africa at the University of Ghana Legon Graduation ceremony for Post Graduate students, a couple of weeks ago.
Mr Twum Asante said that “university as a knowledge market place is a key avenue for grooming critical thinking, curiosity and creative minds, and for rigorous application of knowledge to solve real life problems.” He noted that the university could only certify them for successfully completing their studies but it was up to they, the graduands, to confirm whether their minds were equally “certified” through the impact they would make with their acquired degrees.
Mr Twum Asante advised the graduands to focus their degrees on solving problems which would lead them to secure the hard needed employment, promotion or, the career they so dearly desired. He said that they should influence and inspire others positively and advised them to be sober enough to appreciate that no one is an island to himself or herself because we operate in an ecosystem of work, human connectivity, food cycle, leveraged learning, global inter-dependency and not an ego-system.
The MTN Group Vice President for West and Central Africa said that the academic laurels attained would only make meaning depending on how they applied themselves, worked with others and indeed, sought greater collaboration to get the best out of themselves and others.
Mr Twum Asante said that we all needed transformational mindsets that was driven by strong values and the right behaviors. He noted that when societies were less organized, law and order suffered, social and civic responsibilities undermined, economic incentives skewed, resources poorly generated and allocated and poverty and unemployment became endemic. He therefore urged the graduands to exhibit passion driven by purpose and ethics and be an atom of societal change and not join the bandwagon of “corruption being shamefully retailed at all levels of societies.” He said that “procurement and permitting processes” etc, should not become their avenue for making money. “If we live above the fray, we should be proud of ourselves for emotional wealth. A corrupt mind cannot think and make optimal decisions. Let’s focus our decent minds and energies productively and it will pay off in the end,” he added.
Mr Twum Asante called on them to use their minds and voices to uplift and promote a merit-based just society, taking an active stance for gender diversity and participation, national cohesion eschewing familial bigotry be they partisan, ethnic, religious, old-school alliances, and others.