Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tongu and former Deputy Minister of Education, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has stated that it is morally reprehensible and absolutely unconscionable for MPs and Ministers of State to be seek government scholarships despite their enormous privileges provided for under article 71 of the constitution.
“Let us be honest: it is morally reprehensible and absolutely unconscionable for some MPs and Ministers of State despite all our Article 71 privileges to be actually scrambling with the poor masses over already woefully inadequate government scholarship opportunities,” he declared.
His declaration is in reaction to revelations that some MPs and Ministers of State were granted Ghana Education Trust (GETFund) Scholarships contained in a performance audit report on the administration of GETFund Scholarships by the Auditor General’s Department.
He also called out persons attempting to justify the granting of scholarships to such persons as with fake lists of other Scholarship granted to other top politicians, describing their actions as pitiable.
“Those seeking to justify or defend this national disgrace by creating fake lists and adding my name and that of other innocent colleagues to muddy the waters such as the dubious and criminal GNPC Scholarship list in circulation rather cut a very pitiable image of themselves,” he stated.
For him it is unjustifiable for any person to seek to say that the MPs and Ministers were qualified for the Scholarships by relying on some provision of the act establishing GETFund, arguing that even with that ministerial approval was not given.
“May I also caution that attempts by some beneficiaries and their spokespersons to rely on paragraph E of Section 2(2) of Act 581 to justify their conduct is untenable as contrary to the law, there was no Ministerial approval secured for these scholarships since they were not brought to our attention when we served at the Ministry of Education,” he pointed out.
The lawmaker then called for clear guidelines that will bar top politicians from being beneficiaries of such scholarships.
“Moving forward, let us establish a clear code of conduct barring all MPs, Ministers and other high ranking officials of state from directly benefiting from such schemes intended for the gifted but needy,” he advised.