For the second time, University of Ghana (UG) professors have won the Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah Genius Award.
Professors Kwame Gyekye, Akua Kuenyenhia, Kofi Agyekum, and Nii Yartey (posthumously) won the awards in the respective categories of Philosophy, Leadership, Language and Performing Arts (dance).
The purpose of the award ceremony according to UG was to celebrate excellence and recognize the contribution of the African genius to the making of world civilization.
The organisers did a global search for iconic institutions and personalities whose creative efforts have become international references and stamped the African genius on the rest of the world.
Professor Kwame Gyekye
Professor Kwame Gyekye, is an eminent African philosopher and scholar, has also been honoured by the Philosophy Department of the University of Ghana for his meritorious service to the University for the past 40 years.
In the span of the four decades service to the University, the wealth of knowledge and the exemplary teaching were said to have endeared him to hundreds of students over the years.
In addition to being a brilliant philosopher, Prof Gyekye served as Vice-Master of the Akuafo Hall, Head of the Philosophy Department, Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Dean of School of Research and Graduate Studies, as well as Chairman of a number of Boards, including that of the Graphic Communications Group Limited.
Akua Kuenyehia was educated at University of Ghana and Oxford University.
She has spent most of her professional career teaching at the University of Ghana, as Dean of Law, and as a visiting professor at other institutions including Leiden University and Temple University.
The Law Faculty Building at the University of Ghana, Legon, was named in joint honour of President John Atta Mills and Professor Kuenyehia.
She served as a judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC) from 2003 to 2015. The only three female African judges at the ICC, she also served as First Vice-President of the Court.
Kuenyehia represented Ghana on the United Nations' Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) committee in 2003 and worked hard to contribute to its reputation and influence.
Prof Kofi Agyekum
Prof Kofi Agyekum is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Linguistics, at the University of Ghana. He is also a part-time lecturer at Cape Coast University.
He holds a PhD from the University of Ghana and an M. Phil from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology Trondheim in Norway.
Late Nii Yartey
Prof. F. Nii Yartey, was director of the Department of Dance Studies, University of Ghana (Legon) and acting Director of the Ghana Dance Ensemble.
An astute dancer, choreographer, academic and arts administrator, his contributions to the development of dance in Ghana since the 1970s can simply not be overstated.
Undeniably – he died as he lived – a selfless devotee to the enhancement of dance studies and performance in Ghana.
Also the director of Noyam African Dance Institute, a school he set up in 1998 to admit talented dancers who cannot meet the basic requirements for tertiary education.
His choreographic works of over forty pieces include “Musu-Saga of the Slaves”, “Asipim”, “Solma”, “Legend of Okoryoo”, “Sochenda”, “Bukom” and “Fire of Koom”.
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