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18.11.2004 Education

Danger Facing Education...

By Palaver
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Kufuor Destroying Polytechnics? Palaver -- THE Kufuor regime has been accused of destroying the Poly-technic system and posing a threat to the progress of education, as a whole, in the country.The accusation was made by a group of third-year students of a number of Poly-technic institutions, who called at the offices of the 'Ghana Palaver', to let their views be known, through the press.

According to the group, all the claims by the Kufuor regime through their advertisements on education, amount to nothing but "a string ofconfusion", which has characterised its one-term rule, teachers, tutors, lecturers, and students, face frastructions.

The students said that they have had to go through their course spending more of their time, idling about than staying in school. They said the Kufuor regime could have settled its present problem, with Poly-technic teachers, if it had played the role of the father of the nation.

The students referred to a protest march, they were forced to embark on to the Osu Castle, which ended with a near re-enaction of the Osu Cross-Roads Shooting incident, during the colonial era, in which three gallant ex-servicemen, were gunned done with colonialist bullets.

In the case of the students' protest, the armless boys and girls were subjected to severe beating by policemen, on the orders of a top Castle official.

Later, in pursuance of their objective, the students, undetered embarked on a country-wide strike action, to back their demand for better placement, on the completion of their courses.

The students returned to school, after some empty promises, only to find their classrooms empty, without their lecturers and tutors.

The latter, are on strike to back a better deal in their service conditions in fulfilment of a Government promise, made years ago.

Since then technical education, at the tertiary level, has come to a halt, whilst the Minister of Education, on that schedule, Ms Elizabeth Ohene, continues to draw her salary, and obviously, spending her time brooding over her impending defeat in a parliamentary election, according to the students.

They said the lecturers may be returning to the classrooms, due to their sympathy for the students, and not as a result of any serious moves by Government.

They also questioned the administration, whether it makes sense to build classrooms at the primary level, with HIPC funds, if the majority of those, who pass out, are to end their education at best at the JSS level.

"These men talk about some kind of education reforms, they talk of providing the youth with vocational skills, yet they are insensitive to the cries and woes, of those, who have taken to professional technical education.

"This is criminal hypocrisy", they added.

Meanwhile, the students, who have chosen to stay in the schools, to embark on joint self-tuition, are now facing all kinds of risks to their health.

A TV3 story, shown at the week-end, exposed nothing but misery... the kind that makes one wonder whether, there are hearts in the men, who have chosen, the elephant, as their closest pal.

Sanitation has broken down in these institutions, with the boys and girls, dining and sleeping amongst filth.

"This is a classic case of progress, in the reverse order", they added.

The students confirmed that they are all registered voters, who need no campaign to know what to do on December 7.

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