Mahama's free SHS is a campaign strategy for 2016 - OB Amoah
New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Akwapim South, Osei Bonsu Amoah, has described as a “political gimmick”, government's decision to implement free Senior High School (SHS) policy next year.
He intimated that because the National Democratic Congress (NDC) lacked ideas, the party want to capitalize on the free SHS educational policy to win the 2016 general election.
OB Amoah was reacting to the defense mounted by the NDC after the NPP accused it of stealing its campaign promise.
According to the governing party, the decision to roll out a progressively free secondary education for day students as announced by President John Mahama in his State of the Nation Address was in the party's 2012 manifesto.
The NDC, which fiercely campaigned against the NPP's free SHS policy, maintained that since access and quality have improved, a progressively free SHS is feasible.
But on Asempa FM's Ekosii Sen programme Thursday, OB Amoah said the NDC's sudden u-turn on free SHS is a vindication of the NPP and its flagbearer, Nana Akufo-Addo.
He said it is now clear that the NDC's decision to bastardize the flagship policy of the NPP was to enable them win the 2012 elections.
Former Deputy Education and Sports Minister in the erstwhile Kufuor administration, who described the GH¢71million earmarked for the policy as a “drop in the ocean” said the free SHS is just a political strategy by the NDC to win election 2016.
The Akwapim South MP indicated that just as the promise to implement a one-time premium of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) did not materialize, the suppose introduction of a progressively free SHS will be a big prank.
OB Amoah said “Ghana is in a disastrous state” because the Mahama-led administration has chosen to do propaganda rather than focusing on the bread and butter issues confronting Ghanaians.
In a rebuttal, Deputy Minister of Energy, John Jinapor, pooh poohed OB Amoah's claims, adding that the introduction of the free SHS policy is not for votes.
He said government has done a lot to be retained in power and therefore, does not need to make SHS free to win the support of the electorates.
John Jinapor explained that the NDC was opposed to the NPP's immediate implementation of the free SHS because it was not a well thought through policy.
“Unlike the NPP, we have improved on access and quality and we will make SHS progressively free as promised”.
John Jinapor called on the NPP to join hands with government to make the implementation of the policy a success.