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Politics of Wednesday, 8 July 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Cancellation of teacher trainee 'allawa' was a cabinet decision, Prof Jane is innocent – NDC

The National Democratic Congress has moved to quell what it says is a muckraking attempt by the NPP on the record of Prof Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang.

Prof Opoku-Agyemang was on Monday, July 5, 2020, unveiled as the running mate of John Mahama for the December Presidential polls.

Following her nomination as running mate, the New Patriotic Party commentators have sought to suggest that during her tenure as Education Minister she cancelled allowance to teachers.

The cancellation of the allowance was met with public outcry and some believe it contributed to the removal of John Mahama as president.

However, at the opposition party's sixth weekly press conference on Wednesday, July 8, 2020, NDC Communications Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, said the claims that Prof Opoku-Agyemang masterminded the cancellation of the allowance, are false.

"The decision to replace Teacher Trainee allowance with student loan was a cabinet decision and not a ministerial decision," he said.

According to Sammy Gyamfi, because the policy was not properly understood by many, it was exploited by the NPP during the 2016 campaign for cheap political capital.

"The sad reality today is that, instead of the full restoration of the allowances as was promised by President Akufo-Addo and the NPP, teacher trainees are being served with a partial restoration of the allowances, which is being paid in a rather very erratic manner and for only 8 months, instead of 12 months, as was the case before the conversion.

"In fact, our checks this morning show, that the Akufo Addo government hasn’t paid any allowances to teacher trainees since February 2020," he said.

The NDC Communication Officer added, the Akufo-Addo-government has increased the school fees of teacher trainees and introduced feeding fees which used to be free under the Mahama government.

"Worst is the abolishment of the automatic employment of teachers and the introduction of needless licensure exams and an obnoxious mandatory national service policy for teacher trainee graduates by the Akufo Addo-government," he added.

He said currently, over 2000 newly qualified Trained Teachers who have passed their licensure exams and undergone the one-year mandatory national service are still home without employment.

He said John Mahama's choice of Prof Opoku-Agyemang as a running mate is a masterstroke.

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