Regional News of Friday, 29 June 2012

Source: GNA

Ghana needs Cultural Heritage Policy - Archeology Lecturer

Dr Wazi Apoh, a Lecturer at the Department of Archeology, University of Ghana, Legon, on Thursday said it was very important for the country to have a Cultural Heritage Policy.

"With new construction works being carried out all the time along-side activities like mining, we might lose most of our beautiful historical sites in time."

Dr Apoh said this to the Ghana News Agency at the opening of a two-day work-shop on Archaeological Heritage and Tourism in Accra.

The work-shop is a collaborative program between the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies, University of Ghana-Legon, and the Department of Historical Sciences and Art Theory of the University of Balearic Islands, Spain.

He said with better collaboration between the Ghana Tourist Authority and the Archaeology and Heritage Department of the University of Ghana, it would be much easier to protect the cultural heritage of the country.

Dr Apoh said there was the need to consult archaeologists, when it came to activities that required the use of land such as road construction and mining, "in order to help preserve our rich cultural heritage".

He said these archaeologists could be helpful with advise on which lands contained material of archaeological essence that needed to be preserved.

Dr Benjamin Kankpeyeng, Head of the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies, University of Ghana, said such collaborations facilitated mutual learning, saying "the experiences of both sides would enrich each other and precipitate their mutual advancement".

Mr. Samuel Nkumbaan, a Lecturer at the Department, said the country's tourism industry was dominated by natural resources such as forests, waterfalls and wild animal sanctuaries.

"We want to emphasize the role of archaeology in tourism development," he said.

Dr Daniel Albero, a Lecturer at the Department of Historical Sciences and Art Theory, University of Balearic Islands, said there had to be a link between heritage management and national tourism policies.

"The same goes for social awareness of archaeology. Many citizens do not understand the role that heritage plays in the configuration of their identity, and how it can help to develop new economic, social or territorial dynamics.

The opening ceremony was chaired by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Prof Ernest Aryeetey.**