Former President John Mahama cannot be trusted with the free SHS programme because he had once said he would not spend GHS2 billion on it if he had that money, Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has said.
Furthermore, he said for a President who cancelled the allowances for teacher and nurse trainees as well as that of Arabic teachers while in office, the flagbearer of the biggest opposition party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) will surely cancel the free SHS initiative should he win the 7 December 2020 polls.
“We [NPP] are a government that is thinking about the people, the poverty of our people and to bring in policies that will uplift our people from poverty”, Dr Bawumia told the people of Saboba in the Northern Region where he has been touring.
“And that is why”, he noted, President Nana Akufo-Addo, when he was a candidate, “said he was going to build a Ghana that was going to be inclusive of everybody – north, south, east and west.”
“We’re building a government with policies that will include everybody. He said he was going to bring free SHS.
“The NDC said he couldn’t do it, they said it was 419, it wouldn’t happen”, he recalled.
Mr Mahama, as President, Dr Bawumia noted, “said if he had GHS2 billion, he would not spend it on free SHS. He said it; that if he had GHS2 billion, he will not spend it on Free SHS”.
“But Nana Akufo-Addo said the education of our children is paramount”, and, so, “If you understand the north, and you want to uplift the people of the north from poverty, the people of Ghana from poverty, the best way is through education, education and education”.
“That is the best way and, so, if we have to spend GHS2 billion, we will spend GHS2 billion so that our children can go to senior high school free. “And, today, by the grace of God, our children are going to free SHS and free TVET”, Dr Bawumia said.
“Today, John Mahama says he wants to come back. Can we trust him with free SHS?” he asked the people.
“The person who said it wouldn’t work, that we can’t do it; you cannot trust him with free SHS. The only person you can trust is Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. He dreamt it, he visioned it, and he made it happen”, the Vice President said.
According to him, “When we gave John Mahama the chance, what did he do to teacher trainee allowance? He cancelled it. We gave him the chance, what did he do to nurse trainee allowance? He cancelled it. What did he do to Arabic teachers allowance? He cancelled it. So, what will he do to free SHS? He will cancel it”.