NDC was never against free SHS – Spio-Garbrah

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A former Minister for Trade and Industry, Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, says the National Democratic Congress (NDC) was never against the idea of the implementation of Free Senior High School (SHS) education in the country.

According to the Co-Chairman of the Communications Committee of the NDC, the party only exposed the difficulty in implementing such a policy.

In an interview on Face to Face on Citi TV, he said: “We didn’t tag free SHS as something that is not desirable. We only said it was going to be difficult to implement. The NPP had a good policy, difficult implementation.

“Most parents thought they will implement it all at once in the first year. But they could not do all of them. They did one year at a time. So that was not a reflection of what they said. They even had o roll out the double-track system. Just to implement the policy. There is nothing wrong with that. But they could have been a little bit frank with us that this is how they will roll it out,” he added.

He further indicated that former President Mahama introduced a free SHS programme.

“It is always a good idea to make education as good as possible and progressively. As a Deputy Education minister then, I saw the implementation of the FCUBE programme which was available to all children. Mahama started a free education programme. The only thing is that it was not branded as such during his time.

He also said the Senior High School education in the country is not absolutely free.

“We cannot say the SHS education we are seeing now is totally free. Ask yourself who pays for the chop boxes and the other items the students take to school? So the parents make some sort of commitments. If chop boxes and trunks are also provided by the government as is seen in other countries, then we can say the SHS education is totally free. In fact, some of these countries even supply free laptops to students. So this free thing is a matter of definition.”

Mahama administration run over 40 adverts against Free SHS – Bawumia

The Vice President of Ghana, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia speaking at the Nation Building Updates on November 27, 2020, said the erstwhile NDC government created over 40 adverts in an attempt to destroy the Free Senior High School (SHS) policy promise by the New Patriotic Party.

He made these comments on the back of claims by former President John Dramani Mahama that he was the first to start the free SHS policy.

There’s been a heated debate in Ghana following John Mahama’s claim.

Meanwhile, the Executive Director of the Institute for Education Studies (IFEST), Peter Anti has described as misplaced, the ongoing debate over who introduced the Free Senior High School Policy.

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Source Author: Edna Agnes Boakye