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The Alliance for Social Equity & Public Accountability (ASEPA) has asked the government to return the interdicted headmasters of some senior high schools who were sacked for charging unapproved fees to their posts.
Two headmasters were sacked after charging unapproved fees following government roll out of Free Senior High School policy.
Headmaster of Pentecost SHS in the Eastern Region, Mr Wisdom Blazu and assistant headmaster of Daffour Senior High School, Rev S. P Eleworkor, were relieved of their posts by the Ghana Education Service. Director General of the Ghana Education Service, Professor Kwasi Opoku Amankwaah, announced to the media that a total of nine others were interdicted.
But a statement released by ASEPA on Tuesday, October 10 said: “The Ghana Education Service Council, within the coming week, will determine the fate of over 6 headmasters and administrators of various Senior High Schools over allegations of misapplication of the Free SHS directive from the Ministry of Education. These school authorities were interdicted over what the government termed as a sabotage of its flagship Free SHS program without any hearing from a legally-constituted panel or investigative committee.
“ASEPA, as well as several organizations, raised series of issues with the implementation of the Free SHS program. For any new programme such as this one, there are several implementation difficulties, which have to be looked at and steps taken to address them. This radical approach adopted by government to interdict these officials, when indeed government itself hasn't satisfied all the conditions for the effective implementation of the program, is very wrongful and ruthless and defeats the basic principles of social program implementations.
“You cannot punish people until an investigative panel have given them a hearing and found them guilty of all the allegations leveled against them. For the past weeks, these officials have been punished for offenses the government is not even sure they have committed and that's how ruthless that decision is.
“We therefore call on the GES Council to with immediate effect, reinstate all the interdicted officials. We also call on government to fulfil all its obligations under Free SHS programme to school officials as most of them are currently in serious financial distress. It's been a very difficult first term for these school officials, most schools don't have their teaching materials for first years, others don't have uniforms, limited accommodation spaces has rendered some of these students piled up like sardines in small-sized dormitories, and feeding them three times a day has seriously become a problem. The pressure these officials are going through currently in the running of the schools deserves a patting at their backs, not strokes.
“We also entreat government to consider enrolling private SHS across the country unto the program to prevent their total shut down.”