In a night of celebration and recognition, Mrs. Esther Gyebi-Donkor, the General Manager in-charge of Marketing and Corporate Affairs at the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA), emerged as the Best Woman in Strategic Project Management in the Maritime and Ports Sector at the 7th Edition of the African Ports Awards held in Lagos on Thursday, November 9, 2023.
This prestigious award, reserved for distinguished members of the Network of Professional Women in the Maritime and Port Sectors of West and Central Africa, acknowledges Mrs. Gyebi-Donkor’s outstanding contributions to the successful implementation of the Paperless Port System in the Ports of Ghana.
She played a pivotal role as a member of the National Committee for the Paperless Port Project and led GPHA’s team in executing the system, responding to the directive by the Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, to migrate from manual processes.
Recognized by the Port Community as ‘Madam Paperless,’ Mrs. Gyebi-Donkor’s commitment, dedication, and leadership qualities were instrumental in the swift and efficient implementation of the paperless port system within a remarkable two-month period.
In addition to her recent achievement, Mrs. Gyebi-Donkor made history as the first female Terminal Manager at GPHA, overseeing the Golden Jubilee Terminal, the largest at the time in the Port of Tema.
Her tenure saw the Port of Tema being recognized as the best-managed port in West and Central Africa at the inaugural African Ports Awards ceremony.
The accolade was based on criteria such as ship turnaround time, cargo handling efficiency, and measures taken to ensure safety in the port.
Mrs. Gyebi-Donkor’s influence extends beyond her professional roles, as she served as the President of the Network for Professional Women in the Maritime and Port Sectors of West and Central Africa from 2013 to 2017, following her term as Vice President from 2010 to 2012.
Under her leadership, the network received an award from the President of the government of the Canarias Island, Mr. Paulino Rivero Baute, in 2014 in Las Palmas.
Notably, she established the Ghana chapter of the Network in July 2023, which has already attracted eighty members.
Her remarkable journey continued with recognition at the 10th African Spanish Maritime Port Women’s Conference in Las Palmas in October 2023, where she received an award for her pioneering role in the industry, especially within the Network for Professional Women in the Maritime and Port Sectors of West and Central Africa.
In October 2023, Mrs. Gyebi-Donkor received yet another honour, this time from Ghana’s leading Maritime Training institution, the Regional Maritime University. The citation presented to her highlighted her outstanding service, leadership, humility, and administrative prowess, recognizing her dedication, passion, and contributions to the development and progress of the Maritime Industry.
At the same 7th African Ports Awards ceremony, the Director-General of GPHA, Mr. Michael Luguje, was honoured with a special incentive award.
GPHA also secured the award for the best Port in Integrated Management System Policy, while the Port of Tema was recognized as the best port in import and export and Container Traffic.
The accolades reflect GPHA’s commitment to excellence in the maritime sector.