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Akufo-Addo secretly reviewing Free SHS

Akufo-Addo secretly reviewing Free SHS

Akufo-Addo-led government is said to be secretly reviewing the Free Senior High School (FSHS) policy which was introduced a few years ago.

The Akufo-Addo administration vehemently kicked against various calls by other political parties, Civil Society Organisation (CSOs), Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), educationists, and the clergy to review FSHS Policy which was poorly implemented.

At a point, members of his government and political party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP), came publicly to attack the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) which was the first among those calling for a review of the policy, means the NDC plans to cancel the policy.

However, the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES), Prof. Kwasi Opoku Amankwah, has blown their cover, as he says the government of Akufo-Addo which said review means cancellation of policy is nicodemusly reviewing the Free Senior High School Policy.

Prof. Amankwah made the revelation when speaking in an interview with the host of the Upfront, Mr. Raymond Acquah, a current affairs program on JoyNews/AdomNews monitored by explained that the review which is currently underway is geared at determining which of the cost components government can relinquish to parents to pay.

“…we can do the analysis and then come up and say that, ok, to give Raymond quality education, it will cost this much. Within that cost, these are the items in the cost.

“Then we will all put it out there and say this item, we can make do of it, and it will not affect quality, this item, I think we can get parents to pay,” he said·

The Ministry of Finance in a statement earlier this month indicated that the policy would not be suspended despite seeking support from the IMF.

It however noted that the IMF will be concerned about the possible lack of finance and the ability of the government to sustain its expenditure.

“Free SHS, and the School Feeding programme, among others, are good social intervention programmes and it is the lack of financing and unsustainable debt burdens that could constrain a government’s ability to maintain its level of spending, including social or investment spending.

“In our situation, the IMF may ask Ghana to consider curtailing lower priority or non- productive spending (such as “white elephant” projects) as part of its fiscal adjustment but to preserve priority social spending, including on health and education.” the statement said.

The host of JoyNews‘Upfront asked the Director General whether a review of the program is underway and if it has ended.

Prof Amankwah responded that they are nowhere near a conclusion but a vital component of the review is geared at ensuring a cost arrangement that guarantees quality.



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