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Opinions of Thursday, 6 December 2012

Columnist: Sarpong, Justice

Free SHS Is Most Ridiculous

, Let Northerners Pay SHS Fees Then

"The Communications Minister and Member of Parliament (MP) for Tamale South, Haruna Iddrisu has described the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP’s) promise to provide free Senior High School education if they they win the upcoming elections as the most ridiculous of all promises ever made in Ghana’s history.“You cannot even say that you are extending basic education to Senior High School. There’s a paradigm shift, a difference, substantial between what is basic and what is high school."

THIS IS REALLY AN INSULT COMING FROM SOMEBODY WHO HAS ENJOYED THE SAME BENEFIT TO GET TO WHERE HE IS NOW.Haruna Iddrisu is steeped in the primitive thinking that basic education should end at JSS when High school education is now the minimum entry point in any government job. It is only in Ghana and few countries that view secondary school education as a privilege.

I have said it before that, the NDC Northerners who enjoyed free secondary school education have no right to speak against free education for the rest of the country but these people continue to insult the rest of us with their sanctimonious pontification against free secondary school education as if it is a prey that will destroy the country. President Mahama whose father was a rich Minister during Nkrumah's regime and his eighteen sibblings enjoyed free education and a poor farmers children in the South and the Gold Miners children were deprived of secondary school education whilst their taxes were used to educate these Northerners who are now thumping their noses in our faces telling us free education is not good for the rest of us because the quality of it is not good despite almost 95% of all educated Northerners had their secondary school education in the North just to take advantage of the freebies paid for by poor workers in the south whose children were deprived of secondary school education because their parents could not afford school fees.

On December first, President Mahama insulted the rest of the country where parents have to take loans to educate their children that, free education as proposed by Nana Akuffo Addo is a SAKAWA. How dare him? If it was SAKAWA, why did he and his eighteen sibblings travel from Accra where they have been living to secondary schools in the North to take advantage of this SAKAWA? To add inwsult to injury, the Communication Minister, Haruna Iddrisu on December 2nd said, "Free SHS is most ridiculous of all promises in Ghana’s history"

RIDICULOUS? This man and his brothers and sisters too enjoyed free education whilst others struggle to educate their children by paying school fees as RIDICULOUS? When did he realise free secondary school is ridiculous? I am peeved when I read this nonsense from fools who have depended on this policy to get to where they are but because others want to benefit from the same policy have descended on this policy as the worst thing to happen in Ghana.

Central Region is amongst the three poorest regions in Ghana and it is not fair to allow the likes of Mahama and Iddrisu children to enjoy free education because of where they were born whilst a poor fisherman's child from the Central region is denied the same benefit. If free education is ridiculous and Sakawa, let not punish the Northerners by giving it to them, IS THAT FAIR, MY NORTHERN BROTHERS AND SISTERS?

Let's hope that Nana Akuffo Addo wins the election and implement this free SHS policy for the benefit of all Ghanaians or I will mount a one man crusade if Mahama becomes the President against Northerners free secondary school education .This has nothing to do with tribalism but these NDC idiots are not going to have free education in the North and thump their noses on the rest of Ghanaians by telling us free education is laughable, sakawa and ridiculous when these fools and their families are enjoying that benefit.

It is even more insulting when these Northerners defend their stand on the excuse that education in the North is not free because they pay admission fees and other miscellaneous expenses which they pay just once for the three or four years duration of their high school education. Let the Northerners start paying the 300 to 450 Ghana cedis per term we pay in the South for feeding and boarding for our families and feel the same pinch and then they can talk against free education. I wonder if most of these Northerners in the secondary schools will not drop out and become Kayayeis and truck pushers in the Southern cities if they have to pay school fees like the rest of us do.

Can those enjoying free secondary school education measure their words when talking about this issue since they don't know what paying school fees is?


Justice Sarpong

Houston, Texas