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General News of Friday, 23 September 2016

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Mahama didn't promise 'one student, one tablet' - Ablakwa

The Deputy Minister of Education in charge of Tertiary Education, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has hinted that government has not budgeted for it's campaign promise to hand-out electronic tablets to Senior High Schools next year.

Presenting the highlights of the NDC manifesto last week, President John Mahama who is seeking re-election in December said his government will pilot the use of electronic textbooks in schools.

“Students will receive tablets that have all their core subjects on the tablet. If the pilot is successful, the programme shall be expanded,” President Mahama said.

However, the Deputy Education Minister says the pilot project will rather be costed in the 2017 budget when he hopes President Mahama will have been re-elected.

Mr Ablakwa clarified that President Mahama did not promise to provide one student with one tablet but rather a pilot of the project.

"This particular pledge and indeed the NDC manifesto as I see you are interested in has not yet been costed," Mr Ablakwa said in an interview on Citi FM.

"The 2017 budget, God-willing when we we are elected and President Mahama returns for his second and final term. The 2017 budget, that will be presented to Parliament will spell-out the details that is when Ghanaians will know how much this particular manifesto pledge will cost."

"Nobody has promised you one student, one tablet, the President hasn't said that. We are not promising one student, one tablet. In this campaign you guys want to reduce everything to one this one that, on that. We are not into that business, you can take that to those who are doing one this, one that.

"The President has said that, he wants to introduce e-textbooks, same way he says he wants to introduce WI-FI zones in our secondary schools and in our tertiary institutions, so he is talking about modern digital education, moving education to the next phase.

"He didn't say each student, he said pilot. When you are piloting something not everybody is going to get, when it starts, it's starting as a pilot."