We‘ll cancel licensure examination – Mahama

 The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, has reaffirmed the position of the party to cancel the licensure examination intro­duced by the National Teaching Council under the current Nana Akufo-Addo administration.

He argued that the party’s position was based on the fact that assessment of newly-trained teachers from the Colleges of Education Could not be based on a six-hour paper examination, say­ing, “The NDC’s position is that it does not take a 6-hour paper and pencil examination.”

The former President stated the party’s position in a presenta­tion made on his behalf by Prof. Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, the running mate for his bid for the 2024 presidential elections, at presidential policy lecture organ­ised by the Graduate Students’ Association of Ghana (GRASAG) in Cape Coast.

The lecture, a flagship initiative by the association, was to provide a platform for Ghana’s presiden­tial candidates in the 2024 general election to engage with the youth, and to facilitate meaningful discus­sions on key policy issues affecting young people.

Mr Mahama explained that the party’s position was to turn the whole process into a quality assurance mechanism and not a sit down examination, stating, “As a party, we find the current mode of licensure examination as an affront to the Colleges of Educa­tion.”

He wondered the rationale behind such practices after the teachers from the Colleges of Education had gone through the needed training and graduation and then subject them to another paper and pencil exams.

On the teacher training al­lowance, the former President indicated that his administration did not cancel the allowance as in­dicated by his political opponents, but rather teacher trainees had the option to take student loan or go for the teacher training allowance.

Touching on the National Research Fund, he said the idea of the fund was not to scrap the book and research Allowance, but to help researchers, including young lecturers, research fellows and graduate students, to access adequate research funding oppor­tunities.

“By 2016, book and research allowances have been paid to ben­eficiaries and even though this has been done, the NPP took advan­tage of the national research fund bill being introduced in an election year, and championed a campaign against it,” he said.

The NPP, after assuming office in 2017, had the bill passed in par­liament as the National Research Fund Act, saying, “Nevertheless, the NDC is still committed to the national research fund and will ensure that it becomes operation­al when we are voted back into office.”

Mr Mahama further said the party would introduce financial support scheme with the aim of reducing financial burden on students.

He urged executives of GRASAG to the fact that they have great responsibility towards members and urged them to explore ways that would enable them explore students’ academic support and services.

GRASAG, he said, must take an active role in promoting research and innovation through the establishment of research support fund where needy members of the association would source for fund­ing to carry out their research.

The President of GRASAG, Emmanuel Owusu, in his address, explained that the association was committed to becoming a strategic development partner that collab­orates with government, political parties, CSOs and other stake­holders to implement policies that uplift the youth and propel our nation forward.

“We believe nation-building is not the responsibility of a single individual or organisation; it is a collective effort that requires the dedication and collaboration of all citizens,” he said.


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