Minority insists there must be national conversation on Free SHS

The Minority in Parliament is contesting the position of government not to roll back on any of the flagship programmes including the Free Senior High School Programme in order to save the economy from further plummeting.

The caucus said there must be a national conversation on the Free SHS policy.

“We think there must be a national conversation on the future of education in our country,” Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu stated on Thursday, March 24 in reaction to the Minister of Finance’s announcement that government will not review the Free SHS policy.

“There must be because we shudder [and] have course to believe that we are investing in literacy and numeracy and not human capital.

“It is only in Ghana that at the basic level everybody passes. That cannot be competitive and that cannot make our products competitive in the world tomorrow.”

During his earlier address on austerity measures adopted by government to tackle the economic challenges, Ken Ofori-Atta stressed that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo harbours no intentions to scrap Free SHS.

“Let me say this, President Akufo-Addo has absolutely no intention to roll back on any of the major policies like the Free SHS,” he said.

“We see education as the best enabler for sustainable growth to ensure transformation. We will do more to improve on it for it to serve better our children.”

There was an earlier debate on a review of the policy after the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, in an interview with an Accra-based radio station, had hinted that one of the fallouts from last week’s Cabinet retreat was to have a review of all of government’s 16 flagship programmes including Free SHS.

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But with the announcement by Mr Ofori-Atta, they will continue to be in place.

Other measures were rather announced by the Finance Minister in the effort to salvage the economic downturn.

Among these are banning foreign travels for public officers unless it is utterly necessary and pre-approved, cutting fuel coupons down to 50 percent for government appointees and not establishing any new public institutions.

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana