29.10.2020 Opinion

Increment In Admission Forms And Fees In Times Of A Pandemic: A Crime Against Humanity

By Eugene Osei-Tutu
Increment In Admission Forms And Fees In Times Of A Pandemic: A Crime Against Humanity
LISTEN OCT 29, 2020

Post Senior High School education, one of the challenges for many is the cost of forms for tertiary institutions. I read nursing training colleges have a consolidated form for all public training colleges in the country (I stand to be corrected though).

I think it’s about time public universities in Ghana started to look at this consolidation. Majority of the prospective candidates buy at least two admission forms of public universities in the hope that if they should miss out on one university, they could secure admission in the other.

In my view, it's also extortive and exploitive to sell 40,000 forms when you have the capacity to absorb 20/25,000. It is highly unacceptable, extortive and exploitative practice where for instance, a university knew it could admit only 15,000 students at a time but sells over 30,000 admission forms because students were desperate to secure admission. At least, selling in excess of 5,000 makes sense but, to sell in excess of double the actual capacity the university can admit, is highly unfair.

Apart from selling more admission forms than the capacity of the universities could admit, they also resorted to annual increases in the prices of forms .200/250 cedis of admission forms may be nothing to some of us but most of our folks from the hinterlands like my hometown, Akyem Asuom, will be able to break the glass ceiling if many of these hindrances are taken away. If the universities want to sell more forms, they should reduce the prices of the forms. This will lessen the burden on students and their families.

Currently, the students of the Ghana Institute of Journalism and the University of Ghana are facing a 5% and 12% respective fee increment for the upcoming 2020/2021 academic year with hints of the increment from other tertiary institutions. Parliament’s Education Committee is yet to ratify this increment. I charge parliament to have a human centered focus when discussing this proposed increment.

This COVID 19 pandemic has rendered many parents jobless. Also, because of the restrictions, many students were unable to secure vacation jobs. With this background, the decision to increase fees is tantamount to a crime against humanity.

Majority of tertiary students completed the semester at home. They had to incur the extra cost of data whiles they’ve paid fees. The universities and parliament, which is the symbol of the people of Ghana should drop this increment.

Furthermore, I think the Education Ministry, Vice Chancellors' Council, NUGS etc. should look at the cost of hostel facilities. Some are simply outrageous. Some have the temerity to increase their charges, post COVID and at a time when studies was truncated in March. Meaning students had 3 months leave on their stay. COVID has slammed and shattered many economies and lives. Hostel management should consider their chargers.

I believe Education holds the promise to change the narrative in this country. I believe an educated human resource develop nations and NOT natural resources. It is therefore imperative that some of these frustrating hindrances are taken off the way of students.

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