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Opinions of Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Columnist: Nuhu, Kashaa

Bribery Here! Bribery There! Corruption Everywhere!!

Even in SHSs.

The bane of economic growth and development of every nation is deficient human resource development. One of the most prominent among all necessities of human life is gradually drifting into extinction in mother-Ghana. This development and of course worrying trend of our education can be attributed largely to the political lenses and twist proffered to this sector. Government, stakeholders and movers and shakers of intellectual, moral and social instructions must up their effort to curb the increasing bribery that is grounded and institutionalized in our second cycle institutions to apprise perpetrators of the dangers of their actions to the country.

“Eagle eye investigations” has it that, some unscrupulous Headmaster of Senior High Schools are taking advantage of the new academic year for second cycle schools to exploit and cash in on parents whose wards have gained admission into their schools. They charge between GHS1100 and GHS2200 depending on the class of the school in question. Government approved fees stands not exceeding GHS650, yet these oily-mouthed Headmasters concocted and fabricated other levies just to achieve their ill intended purpose.

However, this furtive business is possible for the apex of autonomy granted these schools. Most Headmasters consider this time of the year as their “cocoa season” and will go every length to exploit unsuspecting parents to enrich themselves. Their aim is to burden the poor Ghanaian with their corrupt mentality and suffocate them to death. Therefore, if “Eagle eye investigations” veiled its look, it turns the trouble of its countenance merely upon the likes of these greedy callous Headmasters whose pecuniary exertion is making life unbearable.

For instance, a Headmaster of a school who is due for retirement this year is bent on buying a new 4x4 Jeep as his retirement benefit out of illicit and manipulative admissions. That excessive desire drives him to levy prospective students with bed fees and retirement fee on the list of their prospectus. This claim is both fact and truth. Fact because it is backed by empirical evidence and truth because it is real. These developments which are gaining grounds annually are too obnoxious to gloss over.

As if the exorbitant charges are not enough headaches to parents, they go to the extent of admitting unqualified students through the back door at the expense of those who are genuinely placed at the school by the computerized placement system. The aspiration of this computer placement system was to curb these corrupt practices and offer equal opportunity to students from less privilege schools to have access to category “A” schools but it seems “hot headed” Headmasters do not share the sentiment and the predicaments of the under privileged.

These criminal Headmasters operate in a syndicate. They contract agents, in some cases, teachers of the school in question and sometimes outsiders who do this dishonest business on their behalf. Evidence and phone numbers of these agents and assigns are in possession of “Eagle eye investigations” and will be ready to present to the appropriate authorities for the necessary action. Video and voice recordings of these gangsters are available as supporting documents.

The fight against these impious acts must be a collective effort to cleanse the bad image of Mother-Ghana. Ghana recently is ranked 3rd by Gallup among 129 perceived corrupt countries in the world scoring 89% behind Czech Republic and Lithuania which does not portent well to enhanced investors confidence into the country.

Our nation is overwhelmed by copious labour agitations due to harsh condition of life usually pointing at the recent increment of utility tariffs, yet individuals are unwilling to help fight the root cause of these tribulations. People are willing and ready to offer cash and kind to those in authority in other to gain favour, thereby corrupting them the more. It is a sheer responsibility to refrain and restrain ourselves from these acts to make the country a better place.

Needless to say, Ghanaians are quick and fast enough to point a finger of scorn at people for various crimes but nonetheless neck deep down in same. We must be ready to expose wrong doers in our small way and ask others to do a bigger one to salvage the remains of our beloved country. All hands on deck to fight bribery and corruption as it is now on a 5th gear in recent years. Some of us cannot leave the kitchen because we cannot even find the way out. Others have the capacity to do that and are in distress call on poor Ghanaians who have not even seen or own a passport before to move out of the country.

The country is hot and scorching not because government is incompetent, neither we are faced with harsh economic conditions because there is no money in government purse nor the leadership lacks vision, but because we the citizens failed to perform our duty to bring wrong to light and failure on the part of government to prosecute those engaged in wanton dissipation but act as accomplices to our own cries. Individuals are amassing wealth at the cost of the larger society. Let’s think of how our small exposures may bring redemption to many and call on the government to act swiftly to punish offenders to serve as a deterrent to others.

Kashaa Nuhu,