Education Minister, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum

The Education Minister, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum says his outfit has presented the Ghana Book Development Council bill to Parliament to be passed into law to sanction publishers who breach the laid out publication guidelines.

In his submission to the Floor of the House on Thursday, Dr Osei Adutwum was emphatic that the government, together with the Ministry of Education “are very much committed to purging our schools, bookshops from all unapproved books to ensure relevant education.”

“Mr Speaker, the Ghana Book Development Council’s bill currently before Parliament will give authority to the Council to enable them sanction publishers who publish books without the necessary approvals,” he stated.

Passing the Ghana Book Development Council bill into law, he says “will promote mutual respect for all ethnic groups, peaceful coexistence among the various ethnic groups from Ghana and also ensure national development”.

His submission follows a controversy sparked by some two textbooks – History of Ghana, Text Book 3 by Badu Nkansah Publications and Golden English Basic 4 published by Golden Publications – that have resulted in a number of Ghanaians questioning the role of NaCCA and the Education Ministry in ensuring pupils in schools are provided with suitable learning materials.

The contents of the textbooks described as “bigotry and offensive” presented an inaccurate representation of the Ewe ethnic group.

But disclosing the role of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NaCCA) on the issue, the Education Minister stated “unequivocally that NaCCA has not approved these books for use in schools.”

According to him, Badu Nkansah after being directed by NaCCA to amend some inaccuracies in his textbook (History of Ghana Textbook 3) returned to the Council on January 2021.

“Golden English Basic 4 was submitted for assessment on March 5, 2021. Assessment on this particular book is yet to begin,” he noted.

Citing a press statement released by NaCCA on March 15, 2021, Dr Adutwum said the publishers have been directed to withdraw the said learning materials from the market.

“NaCCA has also informed stakeholders about imminent random visits to schools to check and withdraw unapproved books. With respect to the two unapproved books, NaCCA has written to the publishers asking them to withdraw these books and any other unapproved books that they may have on the market immediately,” parts of the statements read.