Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has praised the legacy and achievements of the celebrated Ghanaian Industrialist, Dr. Mrs. Esther Ocloo and urged young entrepreneurs to emulate her can-do spirit.
According to Mr. Nkrumah, the work of Dr. Ocloo should serve as an inspiration to a generation of industrialists and spur innovation and productivity.
Mr. Nkrumah was delivering the keynote address at a ceremony in Accra to launch activities marking the centenary celebration of the life of Dr. Mrs. Esther Ocloo who died in 2002 on the theme “honoring a legend of her time”.
He said the late renowned industrialist dedicated her life in helping others, especially women and gave many the hope that they too can succeed.
“The AGI [Association of Ghana Industries] is a befitting living tribute to her legacy but it will be important to institutionalise her vision and the values that she stood for, so that the next generation of industrialists here in Ghana can learn from it,” he added.
The Minister said like Dr. Ocloo, many young people can also take up the challenge and make major contributions to the development of the country.
“We live in a time when increasingly the role of the everyday citizen is downplayed and for every matter that comes up, officialdom or government is looked to for solutions. But there is a lot of room for the everyday Ghanaian to make major contributions like she did to the development of our nation,” he noted.
The Ofoase Ayirebi legislator charged the media to make time to highlight her success story, legacy and promote how today’s young business community can learn from it.
Dr. Mrs. Esther Ocloo
Dr. Mrs. Esther Ocloo’s pioneering work in the development of the indigenous industrial sector in the country, led to her establishing Nkulenu Industries as the first food processing factory in the then Gold Coast in 1942 which inspired many to do same.
Three decades later she introduced Ghanaian foods through her industrious drive onto the International Market and paved way for the export of several other Ghanaian food brands.
Her work led to the establishment of the Federation of Ghana Industries in 1958, now the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) to advocate research on and to promote businesses in Ghana.
In 1988, Dr. Esther Ocloo co-founded Aid to Artisans Ghana to promote and support the development of handicrafts in Ghana for export thus helping to create employment and increase incomes of various artisans.
When she departed to her maker in March 2002, the government then, headed by President John Agyekum Kufuor honoured her with a state burial.