General News of Tue, 15 Aug 20177
Critics of Free SHS policy are 'selfish and greedy' - Minister
The Ashanti Regional Minister Simon Osei-Mensah has descended on critics of the NPP government’s Free Senior High School Education programme describing them as ”selfish and greedy” people who want to deliberately kill the programme so as to advance their political carriers.
According to the Regional Minister, all those who are doing advocacy against the Free SHS programme know very well their quest to remain relevant in the Ghanaian political circles will end if all Ghanaians, especially the youth become educated, as to the minister, the survival of these people thrive in an uneducated environment.
Mr. Osei-Mensah noted that ”there are certain group of individuals in our country” who are not ready to help build a stronger and educated nation by developing young people with great brains and potentials but are financially helpless.
The Regional Minister, therefore, urged Ghanaians to disregard people who make false allegations and speak ill of the government’s programmes, stressing that the Free Senior High School policy remains one of the best social interventions for the people of Ghana.
Speaking at a town hall meeting organized by the Ministry of Information last Thursday, at Bekwai, the minister stressed: “they oppose Free SHS because they don’t want your progress, they don’t want your voices to be heard in society. These are greedy people who have acquired wealth for themselves but do not want others to move along with them in riches.”
Recounting to the gathering how GHC40 completely changed his educational and social live in 1974, Mr. Simon Osei-Mensah disclosed: “I was once a victim, I stayed home on several occasions due to financial constraints though I’ve passed common entrance when I was in my first year and because I lost my dad I had no one to take care of my education. It was my uncle who borrowed GHC 40 for me to start my six form education.”
”And because God gifted me with brains, I got a CMB scholarship to further my education and this is here I am as a regional minister. I would have stayed at home had it not been the GHC40 from my uncle and it was that which saved my life, so I get really sad when people out of greediness and politics try to speak ill about this policy,” the minister stressed.
He stated that gradually things are shaping up for the takeoff of the country’s economy, indicating that the Central Bank of Ghana has reduced its Prime Rate from 26 percent to 21 percent. He therefore urged banks to let that reflect on their activities by also reducing interest rate on transactions and loans given to their customers.
Mr. Osei-Mensah was of the view that if the banks operate in accordance with the Ghana Commercial Bank’s interest rate, everyone would be a beneficiary of the national cake. He emphasized that banks should follow the updates to help boost the businesses of their customers and not to become rivals to the government.
The Regional Minister then called on Ghanaians to exercise patience for the Nana Addo-led NPP government to deliver on their promises, assuring that the government will not relent in fulfilling all its promises in order of importance.
According to him, “for the Nana Addo led administration, promises are meant to be fulfilled, the truth of the matter is, we have to deliver in terms of priority, the promises are all important but others are of more importance than others. That is why the Free SHS would be starting this September to ease the burdens on parents but definitely others are on their way soon to be implemented.”
He also encouraged Traditional Authorities to be champions of all the programmes as the NPP government recognizes them as major stakeholders in the development agenda.