Delay in fund release cause of scholarship nonpayment, others - GETFund

Delay in fund release cause of scholarship nonpayment, others - GETFund
Source: Ghana | | Austin Brakopowers | | Instagram: @realbrakopowers
Date: 15-08-2017 Time: 03:08:47:pm
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The Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) says its operations are constantly affected because of government’s failure to pay in full, monies due it.

The Fund said its cash-strapped status is partly to blame for the many uncompleted projects across the country and delay in the payment of allowance to Ghanaian students on scholarship.

GETFund Financial Controller, Alexi Asuinura told Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee Tuesday, the delay in fund release is an “age-old problem.”

“The GETfund has always found it difficult getting the Ministry of Finance to release funds that are due it,” he said, adding, the Education Ministry has often intervened in the matter.

Mr Asuinura said even after an Accra High Court ruled in 2014 for the Finance Ministry to pay all debts owed the Fund, it was not done.

“It is sad to know that this [ruling] was not obeyed and we still have this problem,” he lamented.

The Fund has several abandoned educational infrastructural projects in the 216 districts in the country.

In the Northern Region alone, there are 14 projects that have been left uncompleted for more than 10 years. They include science and hostel facilities for some senior high schools (SHSs) and Trainee colleges.

There are also issues of delay in the release of allowance to GETFund scholarship beneficiaries who are pursuing various programmes outside the country.

Critics blamed the ineffectiveness of the Fund for the many challenges it is facing.

But Mr Asuinura said the problem the Fund is facing has to do with the untimely disbursement of funds due it.

He said the government still owes it GHS94 million representing outstanding money from 2016.

He acknowledged the 2017 money has been released in full but said the Fund needs the outstanding monies to settle debts.

“All efforts are being made to ensure that these funds are released so we will be able to execute our mandate,” he told the lawmakers.

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