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16.09.2005 Education

Kofi Wayo Warns On Free Education

By Chronicle
Kofi Wayo Warns On Free Education
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Charles Kofi Wayo, aka Chuck, has categorically stated that the Free Compulsory Universal Basic Education (FCUBE) programme, would be a failure if government continued to depend solely on the IMF and DANIDA for resources and assistance.

"The programme would not be achieved if the government depends on the IMF and DANIDA", he declared.

According to him, the NPP lacks focus in education and therefore have to depend on others for direction.

Explaining his assertion in an interview with The Chronicle yesterday, he said the methods needed for the implementation of the programme is very poor and would definitely fail.

He disclosed that the present administration wants the masses to believe they are working, hence the implementation of the programme.

When quizzed as to whether the implementation came at the right time, he noted that the ministry should have executed the programme within its first years in power. He was, however, quick to add that issue at state was not its implementation now, but its success, expressing concern that it does not have practical and efficient people to manage it.

Wayo also said he expected government to assume the highest responsibility and not least.

He believes parents should have been made to pay fees while the programme catered for transportation, food, stationery and other needs of the children.

He told The Chronicle that private schools should have been included in the FCUBE programme as it is the government's duty to provide every child with education.

He said that private schools could be supported after public schools have been given the necessary resources and facilities to meet a highest standards Wayo was also of the view that public schools should be better than the private school because it was funded with the tax payer's money and he urged government to set standards for public schools to meet that of the private schools.

"By setting those standards, parents would not have to send their wards to private schools," he reiterated.

Commenting on the obstacles in the education ministry, he blamed it on visionless leadership and government, since, in his opinion, they were in government to enrich themselves at the expense of the taxpayers.

"Past governments had visionless leadership, which has contributed to problems in the education ministry", Wayo indicated.

When asked to comment on the standards of education , he informed The Chronicle that they were really declining.

"Education in this country has not seen any improvement; things are going down," he lamented.

Wayo bemoaned that teachers were not well-paid, had no improvement in their conditions of services, had upgrading of facilities at the various tertiary institutions.

He cited as an example that directors of GES organize conferences when salaries of teachers have not been improved or paid.

Faced with these problems, he said teachers are not encouraged to teach as expected of them, thereby contributing to the fallen standards.

He noted that these factors have also contributed to the shortage of teachers, which has become a major predicament in this country.

"Education in the Ghana worsened after Dr. Kwamen Nkrumah was over-thrown," he said.

Some of the recommendation Wayo made to improve education in the country was for government to allocate about 30% of its budget to the coffers of the ministry of education and also sacrifice all it has to give better salaries to teachers.

He also suggested the upgrading of tertiary institutions with better facilities.

"If government is into education, it would put about 30% of its budget in it," he advised.

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