A state-of-the-art automotive technical training facility, the first of its kind in Ghana was launched on Wednesday at Graphic Road in Accra.
The West African Vehicle Academy (WAVA) develops skills and knowledge of trainees and capacitates them to address the challenges of modern automotive service, diagnosis, and repair.
The challenge of technical skills shortage in the automotive sector further amplifies the need for technological development of the modern motor vehicle; the vehicle academy – WAVA, provides just that.
WAVA is a not-for-profit joint venture of Bosch Automotive Aftermarket in Ghana, Rana Motors and the German Development Cooperation through its develoPPP programme.
Implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, develoPPP is an initiative of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) that seeks to promote private sector involvement where business opportunities and the need for development policy action overlap.
The opening event was intended to foster networking and to strategically unveil the state-of-the-art facility for further discussions on how relevant parties could take advantage of the setup.
With Government of Ghana’s objective to make the country a fully integrated and competitive industrial hub for the automotive industry in West Africa, sector stakeholders are expected to take advantage of the diverse opportunities that evolve.
The Vehicle Academy is thus strategically positioned to equip participating institutions and corporate bodies with requisite automotive diagnostic skills, to build comparative advantage and competitiveness.
As of now, WAVA trains technicians from the Rana Motors Service Network, technicians of the Bosch Service Network, and trainers and instructors from public and private technical schools and universities. In the near future, it is planned to open up the courses to a broader public, including individual students and service partners from other car makes.
Training at the vehicle academy is conducted by highly experienced trainers, who in addition to their previous experience, went through an intensive training-of-trainers with international senior mechanic trainers.
For most of the training courses, the number of trainees is limited to a maximum of 10 participants allowing for intensive practical exposure for the trainee. This hands-on approach has proven to be highly efficient.
During practical sessions, trainees operate state of the art diagnostic equipment and advanced tools while trainers assist with support and advice. The training vehicles are multi make mirroring the diversity of the Ghanaian vehicle market.
After a substantial investment of all three partners for equipment, tools and technical installations, undeterred by the pandemic and by applying the required hygiene protocols, WAVA started with its first training schedule in August 2020.
Since then, more than 1,000 trainees have patronised the courses. Most courses have a duration of up to one week tackling a vast variety of subjects relevant to the automotive service industry.
The opening event attracted diverse high-level stakeholders from the private and public sectors, the education sector, and the development sector.
A panel discussion on the future of the automotive sector in the Sub-region, with a cursory glance at Ghana, as well as a workstation demonstration fair at the vehicle academy were the major highlights.