Scania has helped to establish Ghana’s first vocational training programme for heavy vehicle service technicians. The Swedish truck manufacturer, along with other industry partners, has contributed funding, premises, vehicles and personnel support to the project, which has been established in conjunction with the German Corporation for International Cooperation.

According to a statement issued by Scania, Ghana’s Government Technical Training Centre annually enrolls about 120 students for three-year vocational training as service technicians for passenger cars and minibuses. However, there has never been any training programme in the country for heavy vehicles.

Within the three-year training curriculum for service technicians, approximately 25 students a year will have the opportunity to specialise in mechatronics for heavy vehicles. Training will include systematic trouble-shooting using digital diagnostics systems.

Scania has delivered 245 buses for the newly established Accra Bus Rapid Transit system. The buses must be serviced and repaired by professional personnel with specialist skills, which have been difficult to find on the Ghanaian labour market.

“The demands on service technicians at present are very different from those in the past,” says Fredrik Morsing, Managing Director of Scania West Africa. “Nowadays, you need both good theoretical and practical training, as well as computer and language skills. The service technician is now a highly qualified person that you entrust with your valuable asset.”

The new Heavy Duty Mechatronic vocational training programme will be part of the Government Technical Training Centre but will be carried out in a 500-square metre building within Scania’s premises. The company has provided the major part of industry funding for this aspect of the project, in addition to making available vehicles also contributing to the development of training content.