Western Regional Minister, Honorable Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, has called on Ghanaian youth to start a skill to lessen unemployment in the nation during the launch of the founders of Roland Rice at Anto, Shama District, in the Western Region.
Mr. Okyere. Darko, the guest of honor at the unveiling of Jesse Prah Enterprise, producers of Roland Rice, lauded the efforts of the young entrepreneur, Jesse Roland Prah for establishing a private venture to cater to the production needs in the country.
The Minister specifically admonished the youth to embrace the idea of private business in his speech at the unveiling ceremony. He geared his focus towards students and encouraged them to start generating business ideas while studying and should not solely depend on the idea of working in the public sector.
He further stated that as graduates and literate individuals, they need to see themselves as entrepreneurs (businessmen or businesswomen). By doing so, they become part of the solution rather than the problem for the community and the country as a whole.
“It is time we start telling young people that when you are in school, start thinking about your plan B. Start thinking about what you will do for yourself as a businessman when you finish school. Don’t wait until you finish. As a graduate and an elite, instead of becoming part of the problem, you should be part of the solution.” He said.
He stated that the inability to secure a job as a graduate does not mean the world has come to an end. During that period, one can identify the needs of society, strive for solutions, and generate income from them.
“Everywhere in Ghana, we talk about students or graduates looking for jobs. And if they don’t get the jobs, they think they’ve lost it or they’ve lost their world. But I believe that as a graduate and as an elite of our society, they should be the first person to identify the needs of society, provide solutions, and engage in business.”
Shedding light on his words, he specifically mentioned Jesse’s progress in setting up a business in his community, which will hopefully solve a societal problem.
“Jesse realized that we didn’t have local rice. And even if we had it, we didn’t have enough. So today, he has a farm and a factory to meet the country’s needs.”
The Minister lamented the unfortunately limited recognition given to personalities who have greatly contributed to the country’s achievements. He mentioned how resilient businessmen, Jacob Wilson Sey and Paa Grant’s good works have been overlooked and underappreciated in our era, which is a significant challenge for the country.
“One of the biggest challenges we have in Ghana is that we tend not to support or recognize the private sector. It took a businessman, Wilson Sey, to go to London and plead with Queen Victoria to ensure that Ghanaian lands were not taken over by the Whites. It took a businessman, but even in Ghana today, we don’t celebrate him.”
“When we also wanted to achieve independence, the man who used his own money for Ghanaians to gain independence, and today we even have a day called ‘Founders Day,’ is Paa Grant, who comes from the Western Region.”
The Regional Minister concluded by indicating that there is a need to appreciate people who have been a blessing to the country. He shared his experience after winning the Regional Minister seat for the National Patriotic Party, Western Region chapter.
“We don’t celebrate them, and that is why I believe that when I became a Regional Minister, I went to church and told my Osofo (pastor) to please not pray for politicians but to pray for businessmen to grow their businesses so that the youth can find employment.”
Roland Rice is a locally produced rice in Sekondi-Takoradi; a brand under the business name Jesse Prah Enterprise founded and owned by a young and vision-driven gentleman Mr. Jesse Roland Prah. It is produced in Ghana in the Shama district and its head office is at South Kweikuma estate. Roland Rice has been in the production (cultivating, milling, packaging, and marketing) of jasmine rice, Agra, and Xbika as its main types of rice varieties since July 2015 after the inception of the company in November 2011 under the Registrar General’s office in Ghana.