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General News of Monday, 26 November 2012

Source: NPP Communications Directorate

NDC has no education policy for Ghana – Nana Addo

The Presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akufo-Addo, has accused the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of lacking a credible policy for the educational sector and thus resorting to passing the NPP’s free SHS policy as their own in the rural areas. 

Nana Addo, who spoke at the University of Cape Coast as part of his campaign tour, criticized President Mahama for condemning the policy after enjoying a similar provision under the Nkrumah-led government as a young man.

He called on the electorates to vote for the NPP to make the policy a reality... “If you believe no Ghanaian child should be left behind simply for financial reasons, vote for the NPP! If you believe that out of the children who have dropped out of education, a child may have emerged who, could have risen to the Presidency of Ghana, vote for the NPP!”

Read Full Statement Below:

A SPEECH DELIVERED BY THE NPP 2012 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, NANA AKUFO-ADDO, ON NOVEMBER 26, 2012 AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CAPE COAST, CAPE COAST, CENTRAL REGION

I am very pleased to be here in Cape Coast, the first Capital of our country, and I am grateful to the authorities of this University for the opportunity to deliver this speech here.

As we get into the last few days of the campaign, it is time, I believe, that I address once again the issue that has become the central theme of Election 2012. In the course of this campaign, I have made speeches  around Ghana spelling out what the NPP plans to do in agriculture, housing, industrialization, culture, health and security, if, by the Grace of God, on December 7, we are elected into power.

Today, I return to the subject of Education, because even though it is a subject that is unavoidable whatever else one is talking about, be it health, agriculture, industrialization, housing or security, we must address the subject by itself. I am happy that education has driven the discourse in this year’s presidential election campaign, but I am afraid we are in danger of the critical issues being lost in the deliberate hysteria that has been generated by our opponents.

I am glad to be making this speech in this ancient city of Cape Coast, for it is the most appropriate place to talk about education in Ghana. This is the home of Ghana’s first primary school, the Philip Quaque School and it is also the home of our first boys’ secondary school, Mfantsipim School and of our first girls’ secondary school, Wesley Girls’ High School. Cape Coast has rightly earned the name of the ‘Athens’ of Ghana, if not of West Africa.

Let us start, first of all, with the one thing we are all agreed on. The economy of Ghana has to be transformed to make it a high-income economy. We must move from being a natural resource producer to a value-added economy. We must process the natural resources we have to enable us reap higher benefits from them. To achieve what we are all agreed on, we must have an educated workforce.

In 55 years of independence, the progress we have made in all aspects of our lives has been painfully slow. It is time to make the bold moves that will enable us make rapid progress to transform our economy and the lives of Ghanaians. A society that aims to transform itself into a modern productive player in the global market, with an educated workforce, must get its educational policies right.

Luckily for all of us, this is a well-trodden path and there are many examples to learn from.  The societies that have made rapid progress around the world have all put education at the heart of their development. The United States of America did it a hundred years ago, the British did it seventy years ago and the nations that we started life with fifty something years ago, like Singapore and Malaysia, have done it. 

Let’s take the Singapore example. At independence from Britain in 1959 and then separation from Malaysia in 1965, Singapore had no assets other than its deepwater port. Its population was illiterate and unskilled. It had few natural resources, substandard housing and recurring conflict among the ethnic and religious groups that made up its population. Singapore, at the time, imported most of its food, water and energy.

Singapore’s leaders decided to make education the focus of all developmental efforts. They saw education as central to building the economy and the nation.

Once the decision was taken, they rapidly built schools and recruited teachers on a large scale.  Within six years, they had attained universal primary education and by the early 1970s they attained  universal lower secondary education and they have never looked back since then. Today, Singapore is widely acknowledged as having one of the world’s leading economies and most advanced and successful education systems. In a country with no natural resources, this is a remarkable feat and reiterates what one of its Prime Ministers famously said “The wealth of a nation lies in its people.”

Unlike Singapore, mercifully, Ghana is blessed with natural resources and it should be easier to educate our population, if only we have the courage to make the right decisions. We, in the NPP, believe leadership is about making choices. And we have decided that it is time to use the proceeds from our natural resources to educate the people who will drive our economic transformation. Instead of the revenues from our mineral and oil resources getting into the hands of a few people, who are currently in charge of our state institutions, we think the most equitable and progressive way of using these revenues is to educate and empower our population.

There is no part of Ghana that does not recognize the importance of education. We have all accepted that education is the best route to moving out of poverty. I have met parents who sell their inheritance to make sure their children get an education, I have met children whose desperation to get into a higher level of education is palpable. I am aware of the sacrifices many of your parents have made to bring you thus far.

I have told the story of the 17-year old boy I met in Akwasiho, in Abetifi in the Eastern Region, who said he dropped out of school because his parents couldn’t pay his fees in Senior High School. As I said, this particular boy’s story stays with me mostly because of the sound of desperation in his voice as he feared life was already passing him by.

You will all recall that, under the Kufuor administration, a lot of effort went into what eventually emerged as the Education Reforms of 2007. One of the most significant innovations that occurred under these reforms was the redefinition of Basic Education to include two years of kindergarten education. By this move, children from disadvantaged homes got the opportunity to get the start in education that their colleagues take for granted. It brought a measure of equity at the start of the education ladder.

I have said it on occasion and it needs repeating here. To our dying shame, some Ghanaian children still never make it into a classroom. That is something that cannot and should not continue and an Akufo-Addo administration, God willing, will make a special push to get all children into school at the right age.

For us to make a success of our education policy, we must pay attention to teachers.  Our Teacher First Policy is at the heart of the NPP’s education policy. It is only a crop of well-trained, self-confident and contented teachers that can deliver the educated and skilled workforce we require to transform our economy. Under the Teacher First policy, we shall restore the teaching profession to the status it once enjoyed and make it an attractive career choice.

Under the Kufuor government, teachers made remarkable strides. By 2008, the salaries of teachers had increased tenfold from what they were paid in 2000. We intend to broaden the incentives.

Accordingly, we will facilitate teacher training nationwide, as well as special incentives especially for those who teach in rural areas. We will introduce special bursaries for excellent teachers with initial or continuous professional education in Maths, Science, Languages, IT, Design, Technical and Vocational Education. Another major incentive will be government support for teachers to acquire homes. We will support teachers to enroll in Distance Education programmes to boost their capacity. We will also ensure that every new school built in the rural areas will have teachers’ accommodation attached to it.

Further, in the NPP era, all the 38 teacher training colleges were renamed Colleges of Education and upgraded to tertiary status. Increased funding was made available for the upgrading of infrastructure and some were earmarked to train teachers in specific subjects. Fifteen of the Colleges of Education were dedicated to the training of Mathematics and Science teachers, ten to the training of French teachers, with another seven specializing in Early Childhood Education teacher training.

All the Colleges of Education are currently operating at half-strength that is 50% intake, due to budgetary constraints. We are committed to providing the necessary funds to enable them operate at full-strength, and train the teachers we need, and thereby reduce significantly the teacher deficit we now have.

I was extremely surprised to read earlier this year that the Minister of Education had said at a press conference and I quote “One key initiative of government is the Untrained Teachers’ Diploma in Basic Education (UTBDE) programme targeted at untrained teachers to enhance their capacity.” Mr. Minister, this initiative was started under the Kufuor administration, back in 2004, to provide all untrained teachers with a qualification. We are glad the policy has continued under this administration. 

If it were not so tragic, we would all have had some merriment watching the antics of this NDC government as they have sought to toy with the education of our children. We have heard this government boast about how many schools under trees they have abolished; only to discover, when pressed to name them, that many of these were schools manufactured in the imagination of their spokespersons.

We have been told about thousands of laptops being distributed all over Ghana; it turns out boys names are to be found in girls’ school lists, whilst one institution has come out to say that none of the names against their school’s list belongs to any enrolled student. On the University campuses at least, it would appear the distribution of the laptops has its proper name: One Laptop per NDC Supporter.

This NDC government appears to think that the education of Ghana’s children is a political toy for them to play with. They reduced the duration of Senior High School (SHS) from 4 years to 3 years for no reason but, that it had been done by an NPP government. The results of the past two years have shown students who spent 4 years at SHS performing excellently at the West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE). The phenomenon of Second and Third World War, which was the name given to students sitting the exam over and over again, disappeared. 

We are told that this academic year, for example, at the University of Ghana Medical School, to qualify to be simply invited to an admissions interview, an applicant had to have a minimum of 8 straight As. In the end, only 100 of the 180 applicants interviewed were offered places. Across other tertiary institutions, it is evident that the quality of grades of applicants has risen in the past two years. The children who are in the first group of the three-year cohort are having to endure extraordinary extra lesson periods. Do we really need to subject our children to such trauma simply to score political points? 

We will review the 4-yr / 3yr controversy simply based on the hard data that emerges from examination results in our goal to pursue the path of greatest benefit to Ghana’s children and settle the matter once and for all.

The next NPP government will build upon the successes of the Kufuor administration in education and whatever that is good under the NDC. In the 1999/2000 academic year, there were a little over 2.1 million children enrolled in Ghana’s public primary schools. In the 2008/9 academic year this had risen by more than 40% to a little over 3 million children. 

The introduction of the Capitation Grant is credited with this increase in enrolment. The Capitation Grant was introduced to make basic education totally fee-free, by removing the main obstacle to the success of the FCUBE (FREE COMPULSORY UNIVERSAL BASIC EDUCATION policy). Fees for sports, culture and the like were absorbed. And under the Kufuor government, this policy was enforced by the Ministry of Education. Any head of a public basic school who introduced fees, under any guise, was suspended. Today, under the watch of this NDC government, I hear many schools have re-introduced fees with impunity.

Another outstanding policy of the Kufuor government was the introduction of the 1:1 Textbook Policy at the basic level in 2006. For the first time, textbooks were provided free of charge to all Ghana’s children from Primary 1 to JSS 3. Each pupil had a book in every single subject. Textbooks were no longer the preserve of cupboard monitors in our schools and even a 25% buffer stock of books was printed. Under the NDC, this ratio has been miserably skewed. The NDC’s major textbook intervention has been the procurement of atlases and dictionaries, under the auspices of the Deputy Education Minister, in dubious circumstances at outrageous prices.
When it comes to tertiary education, the NDC claims go into overdrive. To hear them you would think they invented the concept of tertiary education in Ghana. I had thought, for example, that the President made a genuine mistake in adding the University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa to his list of inventions, but he persists in reciting it at every turn. Then to my great surprise, I discover from this government’s Education Sector Plan 2010-2020 that they intend to slash funding to tertiary education, by nearly a third, within this Plan’s period.

By now, everybody has heard their claims to have established several universities and polytechnics. There is much more to establishing a tertiary institution than giving it a name. For example, the Polytechnics Act was passed in 1999, but, in Bolgatanga and Wa, students were only admitted in 2003. Before the NPP came into office, Bolgatanga and Wa did not even exist as ‘Polytechnics Under Trees’.
The truth is available for public scrutiny on the Bolgatanga Polytechnic’s website and I wish to quote from the history and facts section: “An Acting Principal, Mr. R. A. Ajene, was appointed from 1st February 1999 to establish Bolgatanga Polytechnic. At that time, no single structure existed for the institution except a bungalow allocated to him. A task force that was set up to assist locate a suitable site for the Polytechnic encountered initial difficulties, but finally settled on the former Meat Marketing Board offices in July 2001.” The situation was exactly the same in Wa. The Kufuor government built the campuses of both Wa and Bolgatanga polytechnics from scratch and the NPP is very proud of these achievements.
The situation at The University of Development Studies (UDS) was only slightly better than these polytechnics. The NPP Administration undertook a rapid development programme with special allocations from the GETFund and the Teaching and Learning Innovation Fund (TALIF) from the International Development Association. The fact that the UDS was the only tertiary institution to have a line item on the TALIF budget showed the urgency with which the NPP treated the task of bringing the UDS to a respectable standard.

There was a dramatic expansion of facilities between 2001 and 2008, in the tertiary sector. The GETFund helped, of course, but it took focused and strong political will to achieve what we did. Ghanaians can see today the GETFund being used to finance things it was never meant to do. It is worth recalling here the special donation of 20 billion old cedis from HIPIC funds to the three older universities announced on this campus in 2003 by President Kufuor. Lecture halls, student residential halls and staff accommodation were constructed under this initiative. The UCC campus was transformed.  Unfortunately, important initiatives like the construction of The Business School Complex, Faculty of Science Annex and a new Administration Block began by the Kufuor government have been left unattended to by this NDC government. We will complete them when, by the Grace of God, we come back.

The Students’ Loan Trust, new lecture theaters, modern halls of residence, substantial increase in lecturers’ salaries and better conditions of service, and scholarships for further training of lecturers returned to our universities. And the increase in enrolment was evidence of the investments that had been made. From 40,670 enrolled students in public universities in the 2000/1 academic year, there were 102,543 students in the 2008/9 academic year. Enrolment in polytechnics more than doubled in the same period rising from 18,470 in 2000/2001 to 38,656 in the 2008/9 academic years. It is cheering to note that the phrase “ageing professoriat” that was such a regular feature of the university discussions has disappeared in many faculties.
Under the last NPP government, there was expansion of infrastructure in educational facilities on an impressive scale in the secondary level. 31 secondary schools were modernized to serve as model schools in their districts and 807 flats were provided as teacher accommodation. A total of 490 new classroom blocks were built in these model schools. Another 470 more classrooms were built in other schools that were not part of the model school scheme to expand access in these schools.

In terms of transport facilities, 204 buses were given to Senior High Schools; Nissan patrols were provided for principals of all 38 teacher training colleges; Buses and pick-ups were provided to Special Education institutions, Vehicles for 10 Regional Directors and 138 District Directors. In addition, each of the 138 districts received 60 bicycles for onward distribution to teachers.

The substantial expansion in both educational infrastructure and in enrolment at all levels of the educational system clearly represents the solid foundation which was laid by the Kufuor administration. And an Akufo-Addo government, God willing, will build on this if, by the Grace of God and your votes, on December 7 2012, the NPP is voted into power.

Too many children leave school unable to read, write or count. The next NPP government will focus on the 3Rs - Reading, Writing and Arithmetic. Together with our teachers, this policy will be implemented through monitored programs and regular assessments. We will work towards providing every basic school with ICT infrastructure to keep them in touch with global trends and also equip them early with the skills that will be necessary in Ghana’s economic transformation. The Inspectorate Board has an important role to play in ensuring that there is proper supervision in our schools. The Board will be equipped and given the support to do its work.

I have said that we intend to educate our population to drive our industrialization process. This means there will be emphasis on Science and Technology and Technical and Vocational training. Why are we willing to entrust the most expensive investments into the hands of poorly trained artisans? Mechanics who handle our expensive cars, carpenters, masons, plumbers who build our houses must be properly trained and educated in the technological advances that move economies. It is the technicians that will mostly determine the quality of our workforce and we shall put technical education in its proper exalted place.

The next NPP government will facilitate and support the rapid development of skills for students of Technical and Vocational schools. At the tertiary level, we will encourage career counseling and involve the private sector in designing courses that provide graduates with the hands-on skills they need in the world of work.

We will also support non-traditional students by instituting weekend schools, community workshops and special classes. Plans to establish an Open University were far advanced in 2008. We will resurrect those plans and establish an Open University to provide an opportunity for lifelong learning.

I must now turn my attention to the one aspect of our education policy that has attracted the most attention; the proposal for all Ghana’s children to attend Senior High School for free. In other words, the government of Ghana will fund the cost of Senior High School for all. Basic education, under our plans, will be defined to start from two years of kindergarten through to the end of Senior High School or Technical and Vocational School.

By free SHS, we mean that in addition to tuition which is already free, there will be no admission fees, free textbooks, no library fees, no science centre fees, no computer lab fees, no examination fees, no utility fees, free boarding and free meals and day students will get a meal for free.

I want to spell out clearly what we intend to do so that no one in Ghana will harbor any doubts before casting their vote on December 7.

Free SHS already exists in parts of Ghana. In 1951, the Northern Scholarships were established to bridge the gap between the human capacity gap of the south and north of Ghana. Today, the Northern Scholarship is known as the Northern Extraction Scholarships. In addition to it being tenable in the 3 regions of Northern Ghana, it has been extended to four districts in the Brong Ahafo Region and six districts in the Volta Region. Moreover, any Ghanaian, with one parent of Northern descent who lives and attends school outside this demarcated territory qualifies for this scholarship. It is not means-tested in any way, shape or form.

Some sixty years on, two products of this free secondary education policy have risen to the high office of President of the Republic – The late Dr. Hilla Limann, President of the 3rd Republic, and H.E. President John Mahama, our current President.. The late Alhaji Aliu Mahama, who served as Vice President to President J. A. Kufuor, is another example of a beneficiary of this policy as is my running mate, the distinguished economist and former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Mahamadu Bawumia.

Can there be more compelling evidence of the value of free senior secondary school education? On December 7, when the ballot paper is handed to you, three of the eight contestants of the presidential election would have made it that far on the back of Northern Scholarships.

Given, the undoubted value which free secondary education has brought to the North, the question is whether it is right and equitable to continue to restrict it to the North or whether the time has come to spread the value to every part of the country so that the children of our farmers, our fishermen, our taxi drivers, our market women, traders and hawkers in all the ten regions of Ghana can also enjoy the same opportunity that has produced Vice Presidents and Presidents.

Strangely enough, the NDC, led by a President who is a beneficiary of free secondary education, says that the entire infrastructure must be in place and the teachers needed must be trained first before Free SHS is rolled out. If Kwame Nkrumah had waited, I shudder to think of the consequences. At the time that policy was rolled out, there was only one middle school which was turned into a secondary school to serve the three Northern regions; and the Tamale Teacher Training College was the only college churning out teachers for the three regions. Yet the lack of physical structures or teachers did not make the scheme unrealizable. 

The NDC government has established a University in the Volta Region. It has only one purpose-built classroom block. They have appropriated a Nurses Quarters’ in Ho, built by the Kufuor government, for the university. Why didn’t they put the required infrastructure in place and recruit all academics before they established the University?

It seems to me that the NDC’s only major policy for the 2012 election is “The NPP cannot deliver free SHS!” Since we outdoored this policy, its functionaries have voiced varied, negative opinions on it. They started by saying ‘it was impossible’, then they said “Ghana is not ready”, next they said ‘we should wait 20 years’ and at the IEA debate in Tamale, their Presidential Candidate admitted it was possible. Two weeks to Election Day, they are back to saying it is impossible and that it is only being used as a gimmick by the NPP in a desperate bid to win political power.

In typical NDC fashion, their stance has not prevented their activists from going around the rural areas with pictures of the NDC presidential candidate as the person bringing free SHS.

Firstly, the NDC says Ghana cannot afford to roll out this policy because it will be too expensive. It is ironic that Ghana through the help of this NDC government could afford to pay nearly 1 billion Ghana cedis in dubious judgement debts to their cronies. This whopping sum of money plus a little oil revenue could easily make the free SHS policy a reality.

Secondly, they say we are lying about the cost of Free SHS as the figures we have quoted seem to be on the low side. That does not surprise me. After all, the cost of building a 6-classroom block has ballooned from GHC 85,000 in 2008 to GHC 350,000 under the NDC.

It is not surprising, therefore, that our figures would seem unrealistic since they only seem to deal in inflated figures.

I want to state clearly again that we have a well-thought out plan that involves the building of 350 new Senior High Schools and cluster Senior High Schools to accommodate all the children who finish JHS 18 months after the coming into office of an Akufo-Addo administration.  In June 2013, according to the latest Ghana Education Service census, 407,158 students from both 3-yr SHS and 4yr-SHS cohorts will be graduating. This means when Free SHS starts in September 2013 these places will be available. The situation is, therefore, not nearly as dire as the NDC wants everyone to believe.

If the need arises, we will also spend some GH¢25m a year to buy extra school buses for the main purpose of transporting day students to and from schools to make up for the short term problem of insufficient facilities.

Fellow citizens, I know numbers can be boring, but permit me to talk about some figures because these are important numbers. The additional cost of providing Free Senior High School will be around 1% of Ghana’s GDP. The cost of providing free secondary school education, which includes tuition, boarding, feeding and all the other charges for 2013, is estimated at 0.1% of our GDP. This translates into some GH¢78 million. We have made provision for a major increase in enrollment as a result of admitting all JHS students into SHS in 2014-2015. We expect the cost to rise to GH¢288 million (0.3% of GDP) in 2014 and increase to GH¢774 million in 2016 (0.7% of GDP).

Additional expenditure on more teachers, infrastructure for schools, including expanding and rehabilitating existing infrastructure, and establishing cluster schools in areas where there are no Senior High Schools, will bring the total cost to GH¢755 million (0.9% of GDP) in 2013 and rise to GH¢1.45 billion (1.3% of GDP) in 2016. Providing free secondary education will increase the total educational expenditure from the 4.1% of GDP in 2012 to 5.8% by 2016, a figure which is still below the UNESCO minimum of 6%. I am prepared to go beyond that in order to improve quality at all levels – Primary, JHS, SHS, and Tertiary. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, at this point, perhaps, some history lessons may be helpful to all of us. When the British decided on free secondary education by passing the famous Education Act of 1944, it was at the peak of the Second World War. It was a period during which Britain was going through the worst economic and social hardship in its history. Much of Britain’s infrastructure, including school and hospital facilities, had been destroyed through massive bombs.  Able-bodied men and women from all professions had been conscripted into the war and therefore there was a massive shortage of teachers. It was in the midst of this storm that Britain decided to introduce free secondary education.

I have read the full proceedings of the Parliamentary debate which led to the adoption of the Education Bill of 1944. The tale is all too familiar.  Members of Parliament recognized the acute shortage of teachers. They recognized the shortage of school buildings and urged local authorities to begin acquiring sites for school buildings.  They considered the cheapest ways of constructing school buildings, including prefabricated structures. In their experience, however, no one saw any of the problems as an impediment to the implementation of the scheme.  The over-riding concern was that every child had to be educated up to secondary school level, so that Britain could have the largest pool of educated citizens to rebuild their nation.

There is another country that we can probably identify with more easily. I refer to Trinidad and Tobago. They also have taken the free SHS path, and it has paid off huge dividends. Their literacy rate now exceeds 98% and productivity has shot up by 65%. We certainly need a massive rise in productivity here to make the breakthrough in our economy. Trinidadian children attend both primary and secondary school for free and, in addition, their Ministry of Education provides free transport, books and meals. It has been done! It has paid off! Ghana is going to do it!

The truth of the matter is that the provision of educational infrastructure, like the provision of roads and hospitals, is an on-going process.  No country has enough of it.  To this day, every country in the world sees the need to build new schools or to update and improve old ones.  More and more teachers are needed every time. And they need to be constantly trained and re-trained.  The scientific and technological advancement of the world make this an obvious imperative.

The fact that we have been unable to give all our citizens the education which has enabled the countries of the West and Asia to thrive, is the missing link in our economic development. Countless examples exist beyond Singapore or Britain to buttress this point. I wish to cite Botswana, a country that attained independence years after Ghana, as another example.

Shortly after independence, Botswana had the vision and the courage, to commit itself to a program of free education up to secondary level. Today, this Southern African state has earned the extraordinary reputation of being Africa’s best performing economy.  Botswana does not have the range of natural resources we have in this country but they have been able to harness what modest resources they have and managed them well. Truly, the wealth of a nation lies in its people, as was forcefully restated by the respected former President of Botswana, H.E. Festus Mogae, at a recent lecture he gave in Accra. He said Botswana’s success is directly tied to its education policy.

Ghana needs the well-trained, well-qualified and skilled human resources to set us on the path of economic transformation. For this reason, I am committed, without any equivocation, without any reservation, without any doubt, to take Ghana to the stage where Senior High School education will be free to every Ghanaian child.

The NDC says you should wait for 20 years before you can enjoy what their Presidential Candidate enjoyed more than 30 years ago. The opportunity, which President Mahama enjoyed as a young man, that led him to become President of the Republic, is what I want every single Ghanaian child to have. Tell the naysayers, we are already 20 years behind time.

We will give Ghana’s children free senior high school education NOW, not in some distant, indeterminate future, but NOW.  We will do that while continuing to provide well-planned infrastructural development for the schools, increasing opportunities for teachers and uplifting their status in society. We will do this whilst working hard everyday to increase the numeracy, literacy, writing and ICT skills of our children. We will do this while focusing on increasing access and quality hand-in-hand.

I want every Ghanaian child to attend secondary school not just for what they learn in books, but for the life experiences that they will gain. I want each of them to look in the mirror in the morning, every morning and know that they can have the confidence to achieve anything they dream of when they complete their studies. I want them to have the personal dignity of knowing that they worked hard and that they are as capable as anyone else in the world. And I want parents to look upon their children with pride as they watch them mature into self-confident adults.

Contrary to the cynical view taken by the NDC presidential candidate, that this policy is about winning an election, infact, it is about preparing the next generation for the economic transformation of Ghana.

If you believe no Ghanaian child should be left behind simply for financial reasons, vote for the NPP! If you believe that out of the children who have dropped out of education, a child may have emerged who, could have risen to the Presidency of Ghana, vote for the NPP!

Free SHS is possible! Free SHS is feasible! Free SHS is for now!   If on December 7, by the Grace of God and your votes, the NPP is elected to power, we shall make SHS free in our bid to move Ghana forward. Thank you for your attention.



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