By Seth KRAMPAH, Kumasi
The Executive Council of SMIDO, the highest decision-making body of Suame Magazine representing federation of Associations of Suame Magazine, Asafo and Sofoline light-industrial clusters on the 29th July, 2013 unanimously elected and confirmed Mr. Sarpong Boateng as the substantive president of SMIDO. Mr. Sarpong Boateng who has been the Acting President of SMIDO since May 13, 2013 was a founding member of SMIDO, who had served as the Vice-President since its formation.
The New President doubles as the chairman of the Mechanical Association of Suame Magazine, the oldest Association of Suame Magazine formed in 1957 as an umbrella association for all mechanics and which currently has the ‘caretaker rights over lands in the Suame section of the Magazine.
He is credited to have lent legitimacy in the consolidation of SMIDO in Suame Magazine given the ‘care taker’ and ‘land lord rights’ of the mechanical Association and his instrumental role in submerging Mechanical Association under SMIDO to pursue a developmental agenda for the mechanics in Suame Magazine. Mr. Sarpong Boateng served as the Vice-President of SMIDO from mid- June 2006 to May, 2013. Following the Decision of Executive Council to reform the Organization, he was appointed as the Acting President from May to July 2013.
Finally he was elected and unanimously confirmed as substantive President of SMIDO by an Act of Resolution passed by the Executive Council on the 29th July 2013 for one year to spearhead the reforms of the Organization by enlarging the base of Executive Council to include all artisan and non-artisan Associations operating in the Fitting Clusters in Kumasi to lead the conduct of elections of the next President for a 3-year term.
Mr. Sarpong Boateng , a very popular personality in Suame Magazine has had 32 years of experience in Suame Magazine and is unrivaled in terms of wealth of experience in Social relation at Suame Magazine, good mediation and conflict management skills in matters affecting the Corporate Suame Magazine artisans. He demonstrated this group management leadership when he headed the Peace and Love Association, made up of electricians, auto mechanic, sprayers, blacksmith and others in an attempt to reconcile the fronts of splinter associations between 1989 and 1995.
His reconciliatory leadership ability is unsurpassed and this was ably demonstrated in his brief acting capacity in mediating and reconciling aggrieved groups into the fold of SMIDO, and extending a hand of reconciliation to the garages Association leaving very little doubt in his capacity to consolidate SMIDO as a globally reputable organization to lead the Transformation of Suame Magazine into a modern Industrial Estate.
He is being assisted by new Vice-President Alhaji Abubakari Salam, also a foundation member and leader of the Scraps Dealers in Suame Magazine. Alhaji Abbakar Salam is an astute businessman who runs the largest Foundry in Suame Magazine with over 60 workforce and doubles as a Director of the New Edubiase United F/C, a premiership Division club in the Country.
A German trained artisan engineer, Mr. Albert Cophie popularly called, WACO, CEO of the reputable WACO engineering LTD, and who is currently the Chairman of the Sofoline cluster of Artisans who led the design and manufacturing of the Ghanaian Model car the SMATI Turtle was also elected and confirmed as the Executive Secretary; whilst Mr.Kwabena Owusu Ansah, a very respected leader of the Asafo cluster, the second biggest cluster to Suame Magazine in Kumasi.He has been one of the few artisans in the country specializing in the use of modern computer- based auto diagnostics in vehicular repair as the Financial Secretary. According to the Executive Council these are part of the initiatives to establish a broad-based cluster membership for SMIDO in their quest to reform the entire artisanal engineering industry in Kumasi and Ashanti.
Mr. Sarpong Boateng, the president of SMIDO gained his rich experience working with Edward Nassar Group of Companies Limited from 1967 to 1981 as Chief Mechanic before venturing into Suame Magazine Cluster of Artisanal industry. He became General Secretary of Mechanical Association also made up of Electricians, Auto Mechanic, Sprayers, Spare Parts, and Welders etc. He rose to head the Mechanic Association as the Chairman from 2010 to date.
Mr. Sarpong Boateng is a Middle School Leaver who proceeded to acquire training as Mechanic before working with Edward Nassar Group of Companies Limited. He attended a course organized by Kumasi Technical Institute for Auto Mechanics- Light Duty Mechanics with sponsorship by the World Bank further acquired from19th August to 27th 1991. He attended another course of Study organized by the Management Development and Productivity Institute and sponsored by the World Bank for Master Mechanics from 17th August to 11th September 1992.
In both training he acquired a multi–sectoral Certificate recognized by Ministry of Transport and Communication, Ministry of Education and Culture and the Ministry of Mobilization and Productivity with several languages in his command. Mr. Sarpong Boateng is able to think in a multi cultural dimension, bringing a special touch to his work as President and this helps make clearer the vision and mission of SMIDO. He has extensive experience managing cluster groupings from different backgrounds.