Winneba Secondary School (now Winneba Senior High School) held its 12th Dowuona Hammond Memorial Lecture last Wednesday, paying tribute to its founder and recognizing past students who have demonstrated unwavering dedication to the school.
Among the honored alumni was Kwesi Yankah, who took the opportunity to share excerpts from his autobiography, “The Pen at Risk: Spilling my Little Beans,” surprising both current and former students with revelations about his student days at Winnesec.
The event was a joyous occasion for all attendees, as it provided an opportunity for classmates to reunite and reminisce about their shared experiences. Among the attendees were John Aheto, Kwame Ampofo, Nat Okine, and Jessica Amankwa. However, one notable absence was the great Herbert Morrison, who could not attend the event.
Kwesi Yankah, a proud alumnus, has consistently expressed his admiration for Winnesec throughout his public life.
Whether through his speeches, writings, personal encounters, or international engagements, Yankah has consistently extolled the virtues of Winneba Secondary School without reservation. In his autobiography, he delved into his profound connection with the institution.
“More than half a century ago,” “I roamed the halls of Winnesec, unaware of the impact it would have on my life. Throughout my years in public life, I have upheld, glorified, and lauded Winnesec, almost treating the school as an object of worship.”
Yankah’s passionate praise for his alma mater often piqued the curiosity of those he encountered. He remarks, “People frequently ask, ‘What is it about Winnesec that Kwesi Yankah holds in such high regard?'” His answer to this question lies in the essence of the school, which he believes surpasses the reputation of more renowned educational institutions.
In 2016, during an acceptance speech for a public award on Education Impact, Yankah seized the opportunity to mention Winnesec. “Science quiz or no science quiz,” he declared, “by far the best school in Ghana today, often unnoticed due to modesty, is the unsung Winneba Secondary School, my alma mater. And this is in spite of the Mfantsipims, the Achimotas, and Prempehs who make the most noise only because they are empty barrels.”
Yankah’s bold proclamation garnered an explosive reaction from the audience, including former President J. A. Kufuor, who found himself in stitches, anticipating that Yankah’s speech would conclude with praise for Prempeh College. Instead, Yankah used the opportunity to unveil the untold stories of his time at Winnesec, shedding light on the school’s unique qualities.