Four major political parties, the CPP, PPP, NPP and NDC, took advantage of the ‘Manifesto Dialogues’ platform provided by e.TV Ghana to give some details of their plans in the educational sector ahead of the December 7 elections.
The forecourt of Valco Hall, University of Cape Coast which hosted this second edition of the dialogue series was heavily packed with students, the general public and sympathizers of the various political parties.
Even though so far it is only the NDC and PPP that have launched their manifesto ahead of the elections, the other parties who are yet to release their manifestos gave the gathered crowd some interesting highlights on how they will handle the educational sector under their governments.
Being the first to the take their turn at the dialogues, the CPP, represented by Mr. Richard Adongo, said a “CPP government will discourage the establishment of private tertiary institutions and those that will be allowed to set up must have and prove their capacity to help solve particular needs of the economy.’’ He also said CPP will create a graduate pool in certain strategic fields similar to the Cuban Medical Brigade and will export such graduates to other countries who need such support.
He continued that agric colleges will be established to modernize our agriculture and accelerate our economy.
As one of two parties to have released their manifesto, the NDC representative, Mr. Simon Peter Gyekye, touted the NDCs achievements in the educational sector citing the 200 Community Schools being built and the provision of ICT facilities to Senior High Schools in the country. On what new innovation the NDC party will undertake in the educational sector, Mr. Gyekye said ICT laboratories will be provided for most basic schools in the country to enhance teaching and learning.
On his part, the NPP representative at the dialogues, Mr. George Ayisi, said, “The NPP will pay the fees of teachers who are undertaking distance education courses in order for them to concentrate on their teaching in the classroom. Tax waivers will also be given to all teachers who buy and import vehicles for their personal use in the country.’’ He added that the NPP will focus on vocational, technical and general education at the second cycle level by building 350 community schools. Mr. Ayisi continued that they will provide quality education by partnering churches to manage mission schools in the country.
The PPP MP aspirant of Cape Coast North, Sarah Bucknor, stated that, “the PPP will within one(1) year upon assumption of office standardize education from kindergarten to the senior high school levels by providing logistics and other infrastructure that teachers and students will need to ensure quality education.’’ She added that PPP will assist private tertiary institutions with the necessary logistics to improve tertiary education and also upgrade the level of all teachers in the country. Mrs Bucknor continued that to enforce the Free Compulsory Basic Universal Education (FCUBE), a PPP government will establish the ‘Education Police’ to punish parents who refuse to send their children to school.
The Manifesto Dialogues at Cape Coast proved that many Ghanaians are ready to subject policies of the parties to scrutiny before making a decision on who to vote for. Students and some lecturers came out in their numbers to listen and ask questions in order to understand the various issues.
The next stop for the Manifesto Dialogues is at the University of Ghana, Legon on the 6 October, 2016.
The Dialogues is supported by the National Endowment for Democracy Fund (NED Fund), YFM and Happy FM.