General News of Fri, 17 Aug 201821
Current size of Ghanaian economy can support Free SHS policy
A member of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) and a policy analyst with the Integrated Social Development Centre (ISODEC), Dr Steve Manteaw says the size of the Ghanaian economy in its current state can support the government's Free Senior High School programme.
Drawing parallels with what he described as a less resourced Uganda which introduced a similar policy in 2007, he explained that Ghana in terms of natural resources, taxes and donor support is better placed to provide free education to children at the SHS level.
In an address at the Daily Graphic/STAR-Ghana National Dialogue on Education, Dr Manteauw stated that Ghana had consistently outperformed Uganda with regard to its GDP but the former has run its programme sustainably for a longer period, since 2007.
He said: “At the time Uganda introduced the Free SHS, its GDP was something in the region of 12bn US dollars and that was in 2007, some 11 years ago.
"In the Year, that was 2017 when Ghana introduced the Free SHS the economy of Ghana, that's the GDP, was 37.5 billion US dollars. How many times the size of the Ugandan economy?
About three times and yet Uganda has been able to sustain it and they are in the 11th year of the implementation of Free SHS and this is what convinces me to say that the strength of the Ghanaian economy, the size of the economy in my view can sustain the Free SHS".