The Speaker of Parliament, Mr Peter Ala Adjetey, has appealed to the country's private universities to make their fees affordable to enable more students to gain opportunities for higher education.
He stressed the need for such a move saying “the naturally gifted or endowed in our society in particular, should not be denied tertiary education by reason only of their inability to afford it.” This was at the second congregation of the Central University College (CVC) in Accra at the weekend.
In all, 383 graduands who offered Theology, Agribusiness Management, Accounting, Banking and Finance, Human Resource Management and Marketing were awarded degrees and diplomas.
The fees charged by the private universities vary but they are all far higher than what the public universities charge. While the public institutions charge between ¢1.5 million and ¢3 million per semester on the average, most of the private universities charge double and treble that amount for the same period.
The lowest is ¢3.5 million but one private university is said to be charging as much as 1,000 dollars or the cedi equivalent of over ¢9 million per semester. Another charges fresh students, ¢6.6 million per semester and continuing students, ¢5.9 million over the same period while yet another one, charges ¢8.2 million per semester.
Mr Ala Adjetey asked that liberal scholarship schemes be maintained by religious institutions as well as other organs of civil society to ensure that “no one who can benefit from university education is denied it. He mentioned the lack of qualified lectures, inability to access the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund), non-residential status of students and high cost of education as the main problems that private universities faced in the country.
The Speaker commended the private tertiary institutions for continuing to provide leadership and training for students despite those obstacles. He advised student to use the loan from the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) judiciously and try pay back.