2018 budget: Ghanaians to contribute to Free SHS funding

Government has announced its intention to establish an education fund to finance government’s flagship policy, the Free SHS programme. Individuals who want to contribute to the success of the Free SHS policy would be able to make monetary contributions to the fund, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has revealed. Presenting the 2018 budget statement to Parliament on Wednesday, the minister said government has received proposals from people willing to make “voluntary contributions” to support the policy. “In 2018, the Ministry will work with GETFUND to set up this education fund to enable Ghanaians make voluntary contributions to support education.” Mr. Ofori-Atta noted that the GETFund Law allows for the setting up of such education-related funds. Absorbed fees Government absorbed all fees approved by the Ghana Education Service Council for 353,053 first year students made up of 113,622 Day students and 239,431 boarding students when the policy took off in September this year. Beneficiary students in boarding house were given three square meals whilst day students enjoy one hot meal each day. Government also provided free text books to the students under the policy among other interventions. The new policy increased enrollment and funding for the policy is expected to increase from GHs400 million to about GHS1.2 billion in the 2018/19 academic year. President Nana Akufo-Addo early this year revealed that the Free SHS programme would be funded with revenues from Ghana’s natural resources, especially oil. As concerns grow over sustaining it with the revenue from the oil sector, government has accepted proposals to enable everyone contribute to sustain the policy.

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By Isaac Essel |3news.com| Ghana]]>