Your Excellency,
Kindly accept warm felicitations and well wishes from me, a citizen of the Republic of Ghana.

It has become necessary to write this letter to your good office to draw your attention to a matter that demands urgent attention from you – the issue of national service allowance.

Mr. President, I have observed with keen interest and disquiet, the worsening condition of National Service Personnel in Ghana.

Since the promulgation of the National Service Scheme Act 428 in 1980, millions of students have accepted the national service legal culture by discharging their service obligations to the state.

There can be no gainsaying that the very act of availing themselves for service in defiance of harsh economic conditions represents the height of patriotism and deserves our commendation and support.

Mr. President, successive governments have demonstrated shared commitment to upholding the national service tradition and improving the allowance regime for service personnel.

Since the upward adjustment of GHC559 per month was given in 2016, there has been no demonstrable effort to scale up the allowance in a manner commensurate with economic realities.

It is worth noting that a significant part of the allowances paid to service personnel are expended on transport, accommodation/rent, food, utility bills, among others.

Consequently, many service personnel exhaust their allowances even before they are due for the next and are compelled to borrow to fulfill service demands and meet their needs.

The net impact is that service personnel are burdened with debt before the expiration of their service tenure.

Your excellency, there can be no doubt that the country is facing unprecedented economic challenges.

This is evidenced by the rising inflationary pressures on basic food supplies, fuel and transport, the depreciation in the value of our local currency and the ripple effect these have on other vital sectors of the economy.

For the young people of this country, national service personnel in particular, there seem to be no end in sight as they reel under the pangs of the economic hardship.

A monthly allowance of about US$43, being the equivalent of GHC559, is simply unsustainable as the value of the cedi plummets against rising cost of living.

More than ever before, Mr. President, we must match the enthusiasm and hard work of our national service personnel with improved allowance packages to cushion them and enable them navigate these hard economic times.

This is the most opportune time that the state must come through for its teeming and questing young people.

This is when the state should extend its kind and protective hands towards young people who are eager to contribute their quota to national development.

For in seeking to engender greater commitment to the national service tradition and consolidate its gains, we should seek to explore and institute better and more reality driven remuneration packages that value the efforts of service personnel.

I trust that Your Excellency will in goodwill demonstrate sensitivity and urgency to this matter and ensure an upward adjustment in the allowances for national service personnel.

Accept my regards of the highest consideration, Sir.

Sincerely,
Edem Agbana
A Citizen, not a Spectator.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.