General News of Saturday, 24 November 2012
Source: Daily Graphic
President John Dramani Mahama says it is only the National Democratic Congress (NDC) that has a cogent programme on education which links up the various levels on the educational ladder.
He said the NDC planned to expand access at the basic level, secondary and tertiary levels.
President Mahama was addressing students of the Koforidua Polytechnic who cheered him on as he addressed them.
President Mahama, who is the Presidential candidate of the NDC for the 2012 election, had earlier addressed rallies at Atimpoku, Odumase Krobo, Adukrom, Adawso and Begoro.
People lined up the streets in all the areas to catch a glimpse of the President and cheer him on. Some among the crowd danced ‘Azonto” to the NDC’s songs.
The President said the next NDC government would continue with efforts to make basic education truly free and universal and take steps to make SHS progressively accessible and free.
He said the next NDC government would build 200 community senior high schools (SHS) to accommodate more students from the Junior High Schools (JHS).
Besides, he said, the government would put up 10 colleges of education, build more vocational and technical schools, build more nursing and midwifery training colleges and establish one public university in the Eastern Region.
The President said the expansion of facilities at the various levels of the educational ladder would allow students to progress from one stage of the educational ladder to the other without any hitches.
On polytechnic education, he said the next NDC government would improve faculties and expand infrastructure at the various polytechnics to make it possible for the polytechnics to award their own degrees.
Under that arrangement, he said polytechnic students would be able to acquire their own degrees without affiliation to any universities.
President Mahama said the NDC could be trusted to deliver on its promises because it had a track record of delivery.
For instance, he said, it was the first NDC government that established the University of Education, Winneba, the University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa, and the University for Development Studies (UDS) in the north.
Besides, he said, the previous NDC government established 119 SHS, seven polytechnics and several vocational and technical schools.
The President said the current NDC government has established the University of Health and Allied Sciences in the Volta Region and the University of Energy and Natural Resources in the Brong Ahafo Region, indicating that both universities had just matriculated their first batches of students.
He, therefore, asked Ghanaians to discount the NPP’s proposed free SHS since it was a m ere political gimmick to get Ghanaians into voting for the party.
President Mahama contended that the NDC government’s performance in the areas of education, healthcare, economy and infrastructure development in the last four years had been remarkable.
He said the NDC government used the period to lay the foundation.
Therefore, he said, it was crucial for Ghanaians to renew the mandate of the NDC to build on what it had started.