Free SHS Programme Will Be Reviewed: Government Finally Admits In Assurance To IMF
- Nana Akufo-Addo government has said the Free SHS policy and other flagship programmes would be reviewed as part of fiscal policy strategies under the IMF
- Before the announcement, the government had dismissed suggestions to review the Free SHS policy
- Other social policies that would be reviewed as part of the deal with the IMF include 1 Village 1 Dam, 1 District 1 Warehouse, and the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Project
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The Nana Akufo-Addo administration has announced plans to review the Free Senior High School (SHS) policy and other flagship programmes.
The announcement about the review, which is part of the moves by the government to strengthen fiscal policy under the IMF programme, follows its refusal to heed similar suggestions in the past.
“The decision for rationalisation will depend on the assessment of efficiency, effectiveness, and value for money for each programme," the government said.
Other programmes and projects that would be reviewed to meet SDG and other targets include:
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- 1 Village 1 Dam,
- 1 District 1 Warehouse, and
- Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Project (IPEP).
Also, the ambitious Agenda 111 aimed at improving Ghana's health infrastructure will review span a period of five years, that is from 2022 to 2027.
IMF criticises Ghana's Free SHS project
In a previous story, YEN.com.gh reported that the IMF said the free SHS education policy fails the test of proper targeting even though it has increased enrolment.
The Bretton Woods institution made the comment in a report on Ghana as the country sought $3 billion in balance of payment support.
The report by the IMF is similar to observations made by politicians like former president John Mahana and think tanks like IMANI Africa.
NDC says its concerns about Free SHS have been vindicated by IMF
Meanwhile, the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) believes the IMF report on the Free SHS policy reflects its observations about the challenges with the programme.
Ranking Member on Parliament’s Education Committee, Peter Nortsu-Kotoe, told Citi News that the programme should have been reviewed a long time ago.
He said the review should ensure that effective support would be provided to those who truly need financial assistance to access secondary education.
Free SHS must be reviewed, says Prof Adei
Also, YEN.com.gh reported that Professor Stephen Adei revisited the old proposal for President Akufo-Addo to review the Free SHS policy.
Prof Adei's proposal follows the difficult challenges that Ghana's economy was going through, key among them a lack of adequate revenue.
The respected educationist said last year that the flagship education policy must be tweaked to allow for some top-tier schools to be made autonomous and fee-paying.
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