Invest More in Basic Education in the Country, says Kofi Asare to the Government.


Kofi Asare, Executive Director of Africa Education Watch, has criticized the government’s investment in basic education.

According to him, the country has not made sufficient investments in basic education.

This, he claims, has resulted in several public elementary schools refusing to enroll kids owing to a lack of capacity.

Kofi Asare stated in an interview on Monday that the government should raise capital investment on basic education facilities in the nation.

“As we continue to reduce the financial and expenditure allocation to basic education, all you are doing is limiting the number of schools you can establish in a year.” There were periods when we built 500 schools in a year; if we only build 100 primary schools in a year, it shows that there is a limited amount of money available.

Looking at the budget, the Ministry of Education’s Capital expenditure (CapEx) budget for 2019, from which schools are erected, is little more than one million cedis, accounting for 6.7% of the total education sector.

“The majority of the 6.7 went into secondary education, with relatively little going into basic education,” he explained.

Mr. Asare stated that the capping of the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFUND) is taking a heavy toll on the country’s basic education infrastructure.

“GETFUND is the most important source of infrastructure development in the education sector for primary schools.” However, GETFUND has seen a setback in the last four years. Since 2017, when the Finance Minister went to Parliament and had the capping Act passed, the legislation has limited GETFUND at 25%, in addition to other statutory funds.

The consequence of the limiting on GETFUND allocation is that GETFUND allocation is capped at 25% regardless of input… “As a result, the GETFUND limit is harming fundamental education infrastructure,” he explained.

According to Kofi Asare, the GETFUND cap indicates that the statutory funds have been constrained, depriving the vehicle for educational initiatives and programs of sufficient resources to complete existing projects and begin on new ones at the basic level.

He stated that the capping essentially means decreasing government spending and, in particular, prohibiting the construction of basic schools.

He asked the government to create additional schools in order to close the gap between the number of primary and secondary schools in the country.

Mr. Asare suggested adjustments to alleviate the imbalance and urged the Finance Ministry to reconsider the GETFUND ceiling.

“The Finance Minister must reconsider the GETFUND cap, as it is undermining the Ministry of Education’s capacity to offer basic education.” “This is especially true in peri-urban and rural regions where we have schools held under trees,” he said.