The campaign spokesperson of John Mahama has hit back at the president for suggesting a future NDC government will collapse the free Senior High School education policy.
On the contrary, James Agyenim Boateng says a John Mahama government in 2021 will conduct a comprehensive stakeholders’ review of the policy, which would improve the policy and not collapse it.
He was responding to President Akufo-Addo who over the weekend mocked the NDC, describing it as a party with a track record of collapsing policies initiated by the NPP.
Ex-president John Mahama had hinted whilst touring the Central Region that he would review the free SHS policy if he wins the NDC primaries as well as the national elections.
According to him, the policy is being poorly executed which has manifested in the many challenges facing the policy’s implementation.
"Our NPP friends, they don't listen to advice, they think they know everything," he criticised.
But the president said criticisms by ex-president John Mahama were not based on facts.
“I am alarmed by this concept of review. This is because anytime our political opponents try anything of this sort, it leads the policy in question into a coma. We all remember the NHIS one-term premium payment review pledge. Not only did the review not materialize, but they also succeeded in degrading the policy.”
He cited the ¢1.2 billion arrears left behind by the NDC with many healthcare providers threatening to revert to the cash and carry system.
But the John Mahama campaign is not impressed by the assertions of the president.
James Agyenim Boateng who speaks for the flagbearer aspirant for the NDC in the 2020 election said the NDC is committed to the cause of free SHS but against the mode of implementation by the NPP.
He said while in government the NDC was committed to improving quality and widening access and making it progressively free.
He dismissed assertions free SHS is a policy initiative of the NPP.
According to him, the policy has always been a constitutional edict which no government must claim credit for.
James Agyenim Boateng further argued the allusions by the president that the NDC collapsed the NHIS before leaving office is not supported by the facts.
Under the NDC, he said the policy expanded in terms of coverage and wondered how anyone will suggest the policy collapsed under the NDC.
He does not understand how the NPP can claim to be effectively implementing free SHS when students are still at home in October after vacating in June.
He said an NDC government will involve all stakeholders and get a better policy implementation strategy.