Politics of Monday, 29 October 2012
Source: NPP Communications Directorate
The NPP has taken note of comments by Pastor Mensah Otabil on free education. We hold Pastor Otabil in the highest regard but, we disagree with his comments on state funding of free education.
Indeed our constitution provides that education should be progressively free. The state will pay for it, from the taxes it collects from everybody so parents of children in SHS would not have to pay fees; just as it pays for the roads, for the police etc. Some choose to spend the taxpayers money on paying gargantuan judgment debts, the NPP will choose to spend the taxpayer’s money to provide free SHS.
Our free SHS policy includes quality. There are plenty of living examples of those who have benefitted from free SHS and are leading lights of our society. These include President John Mahama who had Free SHS in the 1970s. Quality is key in the NPP Free SHS policy, with the teacher and infrastructure development and expansion at the centre of the policy.
Surely if every Ghanaian had a well paying job, there may be no need for free SHS. But when can we reach the state where everybody has a well paying job? And how about the millions of Ghanaian parents who are not in formal employment or any employment at all and do not receive salary? We do not believe free SHS will demean any parent.
We note also that if some of these comments had been given full sway, Dr. Nkrumah may not have been able to introduce Free SHS in the North of our country in the 1950s, which initiative has been so beneficial to our country.
The NPP remains committed to spending tax payer’s monies in a judicious manner. We remain committed to ensuring that every Ghanaian child has access to free SHS, including Senior Vocational/Technical High School. The vast majority of our people have warmly embraced the promise of the policy. We will not fail them.
NPP Communications Director