General News of Thursday, 17 May 2018
The Free SHS Policy seemed to have been administered and sustained well in recent times after it had been challenged with series of problems when it was introduced.
However, a few days ago, the former President John Dramani Mahama has opined the policy is in difficulty.
According to him, government is not able to sustain the policy and has only released or provided 30% of the Free SHS budget to the schools; thus, causing them to struggle.
The former President at the early stages of the Free SHS questioned the sustainability of the policy and suggested that if it is not carefully and thoughtfully implemented, the whole programme could crash, therefore, the difficulty the policy is going through is a manifestation of his foremost submission.
However, Deputy Minister of Education responsible for Basic and Secondary Schools and MP for Bosomtwi, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum has debunked former President Mahama’s submission – saying the former President lacks information about the running of the policy.
And that it is quite worrying to hear such statements from the Statesman but quickly mentioned that he (Yaw Adutwum) would not blame him as he has no information about the process.
The Minister also revealed that despite being an NPP politician and working under the Nana Addo-led Gov’t, he is ready to meet with the President Mahama and explain things to him for better understanding.
“Should former President Mahama call me to explain issues about the Free SHS to him, I would do without any hesitation despite belonging to the Nana Addo-led Government.”
Speaking with Kaakyire Ofori Ayim on Atinka AM Drive Wednesday, the Minister further disclosed that government has paid all outstanding debts and provide logistics and feeding grants.
And that during the erstwhile Mahama Administration, they used to pay contractors and other clients through the schools – a situation which caused most of the heads to use the monies on priority areas.
Therefore, the 70% of the Free SHS budget President Mahama talked about have been paid. All contractors have been paid but not through the schools. All the schools do is to send their receipts to the central government and their paid, he added.
“And that monies don’t go to the schools anymore, which is what the former President does not know and understand,” Yaw Adutwum added.