“For me, this was significant in the history of the chaper,” says Danny Bannah, two-term president of the school chapter. “This is the first time JHR AUCC is handing over – officially handing over.”
The event was to officialize the transfer of administrative responsibilities from previous executives to the newly elected team. The event was also in recognition of the accomplishments of the previous year’s executive team and as an induction for the administration of the chapters new leaders.
The event began, as all events in Ghana do, with a prayer of blessing, followed by a welcome address. As the theme chosen was African Wear, the room was filled with bright colours and beautiful patterns. All which matched the uplifting energy of a room filled with empowered students passionate about human rights education.
Journalism major at the AUCC, President Lartey has already been hard at work planning and preparing with his newly elected fellow executives for the coming semester. Upcomming initiatives include human rights awareness campaigns, Train the Trainer workshops and a multi-media project focusing on impacts of mining on rural communities in Ghana’s Western Region.
Lartey comes from the small village of Torompan, a suburb of Samreboi in Ghana’s Western Region and has always been passionate about media. He has chosen to pursue a career in journalism – and act as the president of jhr-AUCC chapter – because he strongly supports the work of jhr and believes media has the power to change lives – which is exactly what he hopes to do.
“I want to impact society,” he says. “I come from a place where many people don’t have a voice – I want to help be that voice.”
Past President Bannah also delivered a speech acknowledging the dedicated hard work of his fellow executives and chapter member. He also highlighted the successes from the previous term, including the launch of rights media magazine Faces of Old Fadama – which told the stories of those living in Ghana’s largest slum.
He admitted that when he entered office, the chapter was unorganized, and said without giving himself too much credit, it took work to put back together. Proudly, he stated the chapter membership had doubled within his term, something incoming President Ernest Lartey hopes to continue.
The celebration included presentation from AUCC Dean of Students Mr. Osei Piesie-Anto, who also acted as Chair of the ceremony. He echoed recognition for the dedication and success of the previous year successed and joked, stating at times he would grow tired of the daily visits from chapter members knocking at his door with new ideas and initiatives.
Piesie gave due recognition to previous jhr Vice President Rahinna Iddrisu, stating every time President Bannah would come knocking, she would be right behind him.
Lawyer and lecturer at the AUCC, Mr. Ogochukwa Nwek was the special guest of the ceremony. He discussed the important role of journalists in the development of human rights. He gave word to the responsibilities of journalists to uphold their credibility by reporting factual, non-bias stories which serve public interest.
The ceremony was open to all students at the university and was followed by a group social, including beverages and chops provided by jhr chapter members. To see photo’s from the event check out jhr’s Facebook group called “jhr:Journalists for Human Rights”