President Nana Akufo-Addo has said when former President John Mahama and the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) say they intend to “review” the Free Senior High School policy should they be voted back into office, they actually mean “cancel”.
Speaking at a meeting with the leaders of the Ghana National Council for Private Schools (GNACOPS) in Accra in October this year, Mr Mahama, who is also the flag bearer of the NDC noted that “within the first 90 days after I take office as the President of Ghana, I will call for the arrangement of a very broad stakeholder and consultative meeting on the way forward for a better free SHS.”
“The NDC shall ensure that all issues raised, which are feasible and doable, will be factored into the NDC manifesto,” Mr Mahama noted.
However, speaking to the management and students of St. Mary’s Senior High School in the Ablekuma South Constituency on the second day of his three-day tour of the Greater Accra Region, Mr Akufo-Addo said it was important the final-year students passed their exams well so as to shame the Free SHS detractors who are bent on scrapping it.
“It is not everyone in this country that is happy about this free senior high school policy that the NPP government and I are pursuing”, the President told the teachers and students, explaining: “There are political forces in our country that are strongly opposed to the policy”, adding: “They began by saying that it was a gimmick; they then said that it could not be done for another twenty years”.
“They then said it was too expensive and now they are telling us that when they come back to power, only God knows when they are going to review it”, the President said, noting: “The word review means cancel”.
The President, however, said: “The people of Ghana are not going to stand by and watch these dreamers come back to power”.
The President then told the students: “What I am hoping for, and I am sure you will fulfill, is that in the exams that you are going to do in May and June next year, conduct yourself in such a way that everybody will see that, indeed, the free senior high school policy is a positive policy for the country and shame all the detractors and those who did not want it to happen”.