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Opinions of Friday, 30 November 2012

Columnist: Owusu-Ansah, Kofi

Ghana’s Development Depends On Sound Education Policy

, I Support Free SHS.

Ghana’s first President Dr Kwame Nkrumah introduced his Free Primary and Middle School Education policy probably in 1964 when I was in primary class four and it went a long way to see me through middle school. What I did not understand was the fact that it was not carried forward to include secondary school education. Though Dr Kwame Nkrumah can be forgiven because he was faced with a mammoth task of expanding the whole education structure in Ghana. He had to build more training colleges to train teachers so the task of allocating the national income was tighter than today. In Ghana today, we have the infrastructure for teacher training, secondary schools, polytechnics and universities unlike the 60s that all these were non-existent so for any rational person to question the sanctity of Nana Addo Dankwah Akuffo Addo’s promise to make secondary education in Ghana at all levels unachievable is laughable.

The National Democratic Congress Party has become synonyms with all the bad things in our society because they always clamour for attention on things that do not build our nation but destroy. Their understanding of politics is quite different from the norm and beneath it all is jealousy and envy in the sense that what they lack the vision to do, they would not want anybody to mention it let alone make a policy statement on it. . They will tell you they are social democrats who live simple lives but underneath they are worse than the capitalist they accuse unnecessarily.

They are criticising this laudable and achievable vision of Nana Addo Dankwa because, just as God tells Satan that the Child of God is the apple of his eyes and you touch that person you touch God’s eyes, For a long time the NDC identified the rural areas of our communities as the frontiers for their support base. In order to maintain the support base, they have a strategy to make all those places under-developed as much as possible. Their thinking is to give them some form of education system where they would not be able to read and write to any appreciable level. What is the bottom line? They would not like the International community to see them as denying those communities education so you may see some structures but beneath it is frustration for the education providers; you are demotivated so how do you pass on new knowledge to your pupils? In the end the system would produce half-baked educated population.

To the NDC it is an affront for anybody in their right frame of mind to come and change the status quo. Where will their support come from because those in the Urban areas have seen the light and have chosen private schools for their children so they can compete on equal grounds with the NDC children who have all been educated in best institutions abroad. As they collapse the Ghana education system, their children are being educated in top schools all over Europe and the grand-stand is domination, as they churn out more of their children from these international education systems, the rural communities are waiting for them to come and propagate their lies to them. The situation in Ghana has become a psychological warfare all with the aim of capturing the Ghanaian mind and feed it with PROPAGANDA. Psychology has taught the NDC into believing that what you keep repeating to a person, at a stage that person will appreciate it as of value and accept it as a norm.

Ghanaian parents, the NDC would never want your children to be educated like their children. In their game, their children are the best and you are nothing. In order for their offspring to enjoy a better Ghana, you should be there as the instrument of sacrifice. You do not deserve any better stake in the national cake so you do not need education. What did they offer you from 1979 to 2001? How many of your children went to secondary school? How many of your children were able to complete Polytechnic? How many were able to train even as teachers? How many of them were offered the opportunity to enter the mainstream of our universities? Why are they crying like babies about Nana Addo Dankwah’s Free SHS? The answer is not of any national interest, no, since when did the NDC cared for the common man in Ghana? If they allow free SHS to happen very soon your children are going to be like their children. For once you are not going to end up like Ampong Wilson, the brilliant school mate of mine at Kade Presbyterian Middle School in 1970, who could have become a top Scientist, Geologist, a Medical Doctor, An engineer, an Academic or a Professor of high standing but had to die of frustration through alcohol. He died because the system failed to sponsor him to secondary school even though just like myself, on all the four times he took the common entrance he got his first choices. The NDC wants you to end up like Ransford Opoku Amponsah, equally gifted pupil of the 1970 Class and could have been anybody in society but denied secondary education because his mother who had single-handedly sent her four children to secondary school had ran out of funds. Finally, had it not been my own determination to work and save money for six years, I could have ended up like Ampong Wilson. I was fortunate to get a job immediately after middle school and because I wanted to be educated, I had go to Commercial College to be able to write as I am doing now. At 24, no secondary school would admit me so I ended up in Commercial School. Is that what we want for our children? Is education not classified by the UNDP (UNESCO) policy framework as universally free?

It is insanity for any political party of which the leader himself has enjoyed frees SHS to stand on platforms not just to advance reasonable and sound arguments why Fres SHS is not feasible but resort to insults and personal attacks on whoever would support free SHS in Ghana. The NDC have all to lose, Ghanaian children would have better opportunities like their own children. Ghanaian children would join the work force of Ghana and enjoy all the trappings Felix Ofosu Kwakye,Koku Anyidoho,Fiifi Kwetey, Omane Boamah, Baba Jamal ,De Souza, Hannah, Tetteh and all children of the NDC educated by the tax payers at expensive institutions are enjoying.

This time, our children would be afforded the same opportunities in Ghana but not abroad and Ghana would make massive savings on foreign exchange which would go a long to improving educational standards in Ghana. Nana, I support your free SHS and you have demonstrated to Ghanaians that you are a VISIONARY leader. May God help you to become our president so that we the marginalised and deprived too can have a voice in the Ghanaian society in the future.

Source: Kofi Owusu-Ansah (ghanamindset.com)