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Removal of allowances best for nation and teacher trainees – Okudzeto

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Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa -  Deputy Education Minister
Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa – Deputy Education Minister

The Deputy Minister for Education in-charge of Tertiary Education, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has said the removal of the allowances of Teacher Trainees is in the best interest of teacher trainees and the nation.

He explained that the allowances paid to teacher trainees were based on the quota allocated in the budget for the Ghana Education Service for the teacher trainees.

He said when the quota for the payment of the allowance is worked out it could accommodate only 38 percent of the student capacity of the Colleges of Education, leaving the Colleges of Education with an unfilled capacity of 62 percent because of lack of allowances for them at the time when the country needed 40, 000 trained teachers to fill the vacancies of teachers in the system.

He explained that by substituting the teacher trainees allowance with the Students Loan Trust, the Colleges of Education had been able to admit students to their full capacity, which is 62 percent more than they were taking and the teacher trainees could now get financial support higher than what they would get under the teacher trainee allowance scheme.

Mr Ablakwa was speaking at the Government for the People’s Forum organized at Koforidua.

He explained that it was not true that the government would not pay the back pay of people who worked for it for more than three months and said an audit report indicated that there were some public servants who abused the system and collected money for jobs which they have not done.

Based on the report, he said some public servants had been dismissed and others are facing trial.

Mr Ablakwa said to prevent the occurrence of such fraud, government directed that people who had worked for more than three months should be first paid for the three months and for the rest of the period that they worked without pay, they should fill a form which proves that they worked and once all the conditions are met, they would be paid what is due them.

Dr Kofi Omani-Boamah, Minister for Communication, said at last year’s forum,   some of the participants raised concern about some bad roads in the Eastern Region.

He said as at the time of the forum, many of those roads were under construction, which is an indication that government takes the People’s Forum very serious.

Mr Victor Bampoe, Deputy Minister of Health, said Koforidua would soon get a new Regional Hospital, a new district hospital would also be constructed at Somanya and Tetteh Quarshie Memorial Hospital would also see a massive rehabilitation and re-tooling.

Earlier in a welcoming address, the Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Antwi-Boasiako Sekyere enumerated a long list of schools, health and roads infrastructure that had been completed or were under construction in the Region for the last three years.

He said currently the Koforidua Polytechnic has been selected as one of the first batch of Polytechnics to be converted into Technical Universities in 2016.

He said parliament has also passed the bill for the establishment of a University of Environment and Sustainable Development at Somanya with a campus at Donkorkrom.

Source: GNA

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