Twenty-five students comprising 18 males and nine females have received government scholarship to a tune of GH₵60,020.36 to pursue their education at various tertiary institutions across the country.
This forms part of government’s Decentralised Scholarship to needy but brilliant students across the country to help them pursue higher education.
The grant entails the payment of fees of beneficiaries throughout their years of study at their various institutions and the fees would directly be paid to the institutions, beginning with the 2019/2020 academic year.
Speaking at the district’s Meet-the-press series at Funsi on Tuesday, the Wa East District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Moses Jotie, who announced this, explained that the assembly submitted 41 students to the Scholarship Secretariat in Accra and 25 of them were considered and granted the scholarship.
The Decentralised Scholarship system was a break-down of the annual scholarship scheme by the National Scholarship Secretariat to support needy but brilliant students in the various metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies to enhance participation and inclusion of people from all over the country.
According to the DCE, advertisement was made inviting applicants from the district, out of which 41 of them applied and were interviewed, adding that, the district submitted same to the secretariat in Accra and 25 of them were selected.
Lauding the decentralisation of the scholarship scheme, the DCE said it offered opportunity to people from remote districts to access government’s support for their tertiary education, and said the assembly also supported some needy students by assisting with the payment of their fees from the District Assembly’s Common Fund.
“What we do here is that we pay a part of the fees of other students who really need help but not throughout their years of study because you realise that new batch of students who need help also emerge in the next academic year”, he stated.
Mr Jotie elaborated that these and other efforts were being put in place by the assembly and government to enhance access to quality education in the district and the country at large.
Touching on health, the DCE indicated that the assembly had voted 60 per cent of its resources to the promotion of accessible and quality healthcare in the area since 2017 and said the move had seen the construction of five new CHPS compounds to complement maternal and child health, leading to a reduction in still births from seven in 2017 to one as at October, 2019.
“HIV prevalence has also reduced. In 2017, 1508 people were tested for the virus in 2017 and 17 of them came out positive, this year a total of 1,948 people have been tested as at the end of October 2019 and eight of them came out positive”, he outlined.
Mr Jotie announced that as promised by the Minister for Roads and Highways, Mr Kwesi Amoako Atta when he joined the president to tour the district in August, the contractor to work on a bridge at Kulun, a river in the district to enhance the road network of the area, had moved to site and was mounting up structures to store his equipment for the construction.
For his part, the District Administrator for Human Resources at the Ghana Education Service, Mr Adam Jamal-Deen expressed concern about the refusal of teachers to accept postings to the area, leading to a shortage of teachers in Wa East.
Mr Jamal -Deen indicated that, majority of trained teachers did not accept postings to the district as a result of the deprived nature of the area, and that the few teachers who were in the district were also looking for ways to exit to other areas. He lamented that the population of students were above 27,000, yet the district had only 795 teachers, out of which some were on study leave and others had applied to leave the district.
Mr Jamal-Deen called on the GES to introduce robust policies that would ensure that teachers stayed in remote areas when they were posted there.
FROM LYDIA FODJOUR and RAFIA ABDUL RAZAK, FUNSI