Former President John Dramani Mahama is asking government to stop intimidating headteachers of Senior High Schools.
His statement comes on the back of the suspension of head teacher for the Tempane Senior High School (SHS) over a visit by Joshua Akamba.
The Deputy National Organizer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), is said to have incited some students of the school against government’s free SHS policy.
Mr. Akamba asked the students if they were experiencing issues with bedbugs in their dormitories as a result of congestion which has been occasioned by the free SHS policy, to which they responded in the affirmative.
He made the students show their bedbug bite scars to the cameras, and promised them their challenges will be over in 2020 if they vote out the NPP. He got the students to hoot at the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
The act attracted a condemnation from the Ghana Education Service who further warned politicians to desist from campaigning in schools.
“Management of GES condemns such acts and wishes to bring to the attention of the general public, especially political activists that the Ghana Education Service is a non-political state agency with the key responsibility of implementing pre-tertiary educational policy of the country and wishes to remain as such” it said.
“Meanwhile, all regional and district directors of Education and Heads of SHS have been directed to ensure that schools and students are not used for political activities without authorization. Management wishes to assure parents and the general public that steps have been taken to ensure that students and school premises are immune from such unwarranted political interference,” it added.
Commenting on the punishment meted out to the headteacher, Mr. Mahama said the government should have tackled the challenge instead.
“Our National Executive Member was invited to the Police station and he was asked to write a statement and he has been granted bail pending investigation. NDC is a tolerant party and we believe in democracy and we do not see the reason why we should hinder anybody from speaking the truth. If Akamba did not go to the school, does it mean the school is not congested? Does it mean bed bugs are not chewing the children?” he queried while addressing delegates of the NDC in Garu in the Upper East Region.
“What he did was to bring it to the attention of the government and so what you should do is rather than invite Akamba and interdict the headmaster, do something about the conditions in the schools and stop intimidating headmasters. When we were in government, many NPP officials went to the schools and openly campaigned and yet they interdict these headmasters. And the point is if we want, all of us can go to the school, come and arrest me. Do something about the condition in the school and stop intimidating headmasters and inviting political opponents for investigations,” he added.