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28.05.2008 Education

Government working to release funds to schools in the north

By GNA
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Dr. Anthony Akoto Osei, Minister of State at the Finance Ministry, on Wednesday said latest payments to senior high schools
in the north as feeding grants would get to the schools by Friday May 30.
He said efforts were being made to get heads of these institutions to
re-open to enable students to get back to school as every effort was made
to settle the crisis created by delays in the release of funds.
The Minister was reacting to a statement by Minority Leader, Mr. Alban Bagbin, on the floor of Parliament calling on government to, as a matter of urgency, release the funds.
Schools in the north due to re-open last month are still closed as a
result of delays in the release of these funds to take care of the feeding
of boarding students.
Dr. Akoto Osei said an audit would be conducted into the increase in numbers of students benefiting from the grant because of an unaccounted
increase of 7000.
He said procedure was partly responsible for delays in the release of
funds and efforts were being made to get the Scholarship Secretariat to work directly with the Ministry of Education instead of the long process involving the Ministry of Finance, Education and the Office of the President.
Dr. Akoto Osei said the schools could work under a credit system and
should not demand full payment of the grants before re-opening school and questioned why day students were not allowed to attend school.
Earlier, Mr. Bagbin in his statement urged government to immediately release all funds and said: “we must not lose sight of the fact the northern students are going to write the same exams with students from other parts of
the country.”
“Mr. Speaker, second cycle schools in the north which were due to re-open on 28 April are still closed. The students are still at home, he said.”
Prof. Dominic Fobih, Education Minister, said efforts were being made to pay a balance of three million Ghana cedis to the schools.

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