Regional News of 2014-06-13

My hands are clean – Makrosec headmaster

Headmaster of Manya Krobo Senior High School (SHS) in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality of the Eastern Region, Rev. Isaac Sackey Kwao has called on the general public especially parents who have their wards in the school to treat the news making rounds that he has dipped his hands into the coffers of the school to buy a car with the necessary contempt it deserves.
Briefing the media in an interview, the headmaster of the school who doubles as a Presbyterian Pastor, the speculations were attempt to drag his image into the mud by some group of staff who are not happy about his disciplinary leadership.
“Even though I’m not a Saint, I will not like to do anything that would bring my name into disrepute not only as a man of God but a role model that many people are looking up to”, he assured.
He made these observations in response to allegations level against him by some aggrieved staff of the school who accused him of a financial misappropriation and unlawful billing of students of Presbyterian Education Fund (PEF).
According to the disgruntled staff made up of teaching and non-teaching, MAKROSEC as it is affectionately known is not a Presbyterian school yet students are billed with an amount of Ghc11 per student per term as a contribution to the PEF.
They argued that, even though the school is not a Presbyterian school but students are contributing to the levy, the headmaster has used the levy as a deposit to acquire a loan from the Upper Manya Krobo Rural Bank to buy a Toyota Fortuna with registration number GN 4016 -13.
They described the purchase of the Toyota Fortuna as unnecessary since the school already has three cars including an Opel Astra, Mercedes Benz and a 58 seated bus; hence the money could have been used in other areas for the development of the school. Rev. Kwao was further accused by his staff for what they described as a deliberate refusal to upgrade some members of the non-teaching staff, laboratory assistant and some cooks who have obtained higher certificates.
The staff mentioned that, the cooks brought an advance certificate for consideration but the headmaster has upheld the certificates since according to him, he recruited them with different certificates.
Rev. Kwao confirming the purchase of the vehicle hinted that, the vehicle was purchased by the Dangme-Tongu Presbytery through the PEF to facilitate his movement after it was evidence that, the Opel Astra could no longer travel a long distance.
On the PEF, he explained that, even though the school is not totally owned by the Presbyterian Church, the church has a share hence it was not out of proportion for students to contribute to the levy which aimed at the total development of the school.
Touching on the essence of the levy, the headmaster continued that, the Dangme-Tongu Presbytery a stakeholder in all the Presbyterian Basic Schools and also SHS in the Presbytery including Krobo Girls and Manya Krobo SHS realizing education as one of its core areas of development instituted the PEF.
Rev. Kwao stressed that, the PEF was instituted to compliment the efforts of government since almost all these institutions have serious challenges which affect their smooth teaching and learning activities, infrastructure requirements as well as administration and academic needs.
“The Dangme-Tongu Presbytery having in mind of the fact that government doing all it can to cater for the overall development of these educational institutions, much more support is well needed from all stakeholders”, he noted.
There was the need for the church to intervene in helping to meet the challenges of our schools which form the bases for the establishment of the education fund which was unanimously accepted at its Standing Committee meeting which took place in early January last year.
The fund shall be disbursed towards infrastructural development, provision of vehicles for the use of the institutions, administrative and academic support such as provision of computers, library books and financial support for needy students.
Another letter dated January 17, 2014 and signed by Rev. Dr. Samuel Ayete-Nyampong, Clerk of General Assembly further stated that, “the Presbyteries of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana are instituting education funds to generate and provide financial resources to facilitate educational activities in the Presbyterian Schools”.
It was copied to all chairpersons of Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Presbyteries, all Regional Directors of Education, Ghana Education Service, all Heads of Presbyterian SHSs and General Manager of Presbyterian Schools.
According to the aforementioned documents, the church and State have fruitfully collaborated over a long period in the delivery and management of education in the country.
It continued that, in the spirit of that collaboration, the steadily dwindling grants from the state and further advancement of education in the country tasked the schools to formalize the levying of the students.
He has therefore welcomed anybody or government to open investigations into the financial activities if deemed fit in order to bring the speculations to an end because his hands are clean and not done any evil.