The opposition National Democratic Congress has apologised for an earlier decision by the Mahama-led administration to scrap both teacher and nursing trainees’ allowances.
George Opare Addo, the national youth organiser for the NDC, admitted that the decision by former President John Dramani Mahama was unpopular.
“The NDC government was spending GHC950 [each] on teacher trainees. And we were looking at issues of equity since they were upgraded to tertiary institutions,” he said during a “Youth Debate” on Asempa FM.
He admitted that the decision hurt the NDC and added: “We wanted to migrate them on to the Students Loan Trust Fund.”
Change of mind
Having apologised for the NDC’s decision to cancel the allowances of teacher and nursing trainees, Opare Addo said the party has had a change of mind.
He said John Mahama realises that the decision was hugely unpopular, hence his U-turn on the matter of student allowances.
“Everybody has the right to change his mind, so there’s nothing wrong if former President Mahama believes the decision was unpopular,” he said.
“If he [Mahama] comes, he will restore it, because it was an unpopular decision and we apologise.”
Meanwhile, the national youth organiser of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), Henry Nana Boakye, has cast doubt over the NDC’s U-turn.
According to him, it is strange that the former president would change his position on the matter after swearing that he would rather lose the 2016 election than restore trainee allowances.
“In 2016, Mr Mahama swore heaven and earth that he will never restore the trainee allowance even if it will cost him the elections,” Nana Boakye said.
“It is therefore strange and unfathomable that someone who said there is no sense in paying trainees’ allowance would make a U-turn, after President Akufo-Addo had restored it, to say that he will continue with the payment of same.
“This is clearly deceptive politics that has assumed a fearsome crescendo,” he said.
E A Alanore