The late Daasebre Emeritus Oti Boateng became the longest-serving Ghanaian Government statistician holding office from 1982 to 2000. At the same time, he doubled as the head of the Statistical Service over a period of 17 years. He gained international recognition and was elected as the first African to chair the United Nations Statistical Commission in 1987. He chaired many international sessions on development and statistics including the 15th International Conference of Labor Statisticians which was held in Geneva in 1993.
Before this time, he worked with the University of Ghana for 14 years where he rose through the ranks to become a Senior Research Fellow and subsequently Director of Studies at the Institute of Statistics, Social and Economic Research. He was a member of the International Civil Service Commission and also served as Commissioner at the UN Headquarters in New York.
Two paramount legacies bearing what he stood for are vivid within his traditional area. The institution of the Akwantukese as a traditionalist was highly welcomed by citizens of the area. This is because hitherto the people did not have any festival which was celebrated with such pomp and pageantry involving all the people. The Akwantukese Festival commemorates the great migration of the Juabens and their allies from their ancestral homes in Asante to establish the New Juaben settlement in the Eastern Region some 135 years ago. He used the festival to bring together citizens and non-citizens alike to deliberate on the development of the traditional area. His support and assistance in the establishment of the All Nations University in Koforidua was a phenomenon. He was the first Chancellor of the university which was founded with 37 students in October 2002 and has now expanded to over 2000 students.
He loved writing. For him, writing equips academicians and learners with communication and thinking skills and also fosters people’s ability to explain and refine ideas to others. He had a mantra “excellent writing skills are an important part of communication.” He has thousands of journals and tens of books to his credit. Perhaps the latest and the most popular is Development in Unity. The three-volume academic piece displays knowledge and has been described by many including the international community as a worthy conclusion to the call for a bottom-up approach to national development. Prof Emeritus Oti Boateng said at the launch of the books, “the root-based model differs from the other alternative development approaches by creating a distinctive and strong institutional framework which makes the Community Development Councils the focal points of development and the communities the dignified agents of their own development.
He Pioneered a holistic developmental framework for his people and the country in general. Daasebre Oti Boateng revealed an innovative networking mechanism, transparency, accountability and institutional integrity. His ground-breaking work on root-based today provides pathways to local governance and development whilst generating diverse routes for reducing poverty through female empowerment and the release of a community’s productive potential. He was not only a husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, he served his country with a high level of commitment, zeal, great fortitude and enthusiasm and set up platforms to help develop the abilities of young people. Those who have benefitted from his work as a public servant will never forget him. A distinguished Traditional Ruler, a man of words and wisdom. A man of vision and the heart of accomplishment. Distinguished academician, traditional leader, an achiever, and a victor. The entire world benefited from his wonderfully shared life.