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Politics of Thursday, 26 November 2020


If you canceled trainee allowances, how can you extend Free SHS? – Danquah Institute asks Mahama

Former President, John Dramani Mahama Former President, John Dramani Mahama

Policy research centre, Danquah Institute has questioned the feasibility of a promise by former President John Dramani Mahama to extend the Free SHS coverage once elected.

The Mahama-led NDC in the People’s Manifesto promised amongst other things to extend coverage and make the Free SHS policy better by including private schools.

But the Danquah Institute is convinced that it is only one of the several vain promises of the opposition National Democratic Congress.

According to the Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, Richard Ahiagbah the opposition NDC has not given Ghanaians enough reason to believe their promise because they canceled the nursing and teacher trainee allowances while in government.

Addressing the media during a press briefing on November 25, 2020, Mr. Ahiagbah wondered how the party which canceled the nursing and teacher trainee allowances would be capable of covering the cost of students in private institutions.

He argued; “It is baffling that a party that resisted and bemoaned the high cost of the implementation of Free SHS programme would suddenly seek to extend it to other beneficiaries when doing so would automatically increase the cost of the programme.

"If the NDC canceled nursing and teacher trainee allowances on grounds of the financial told on government, why would the same party advocate for the payment for students in private educational institutions when the resulting cost far exceeds the allowances paid to teacher and nursing trainees?” Mr Ahiagbah asked.

In 2014, under the administration of John Dramani Mahama, the nursing and teacher trainee allowances were canceled; a situation which largely pitched the government against trainee teachers and nurses.

But the NDC in subsequent years has said they only replaced it with a student loan scheme.

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