THE Asutifi District Assembly in the Brong Ahafo Region, is to establish an Educational Endowment Fund by the close of the year to cater for needy students in the district.
The fund, to be known as “Asutifi Educational Endowment Fund”, would be managed by a Board of Directors, with two representatives from the management and members of the assembly.
The Asutifi District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Eric Addae, said this at the first ordinary meeting of the assembly at Kenyasi, the district capital.
He said the assembly would provide the seed money to set up the fund, while contractors working in the district would also be required to pay 0.5 per cent of their contract sum into the fund.
Besides, development partners such as Nananom, the Newmont Gold Ghana Limited (NGGL), operators of the Ahafo Mine at Kenyasi, organisations and philanthropists would also be made to contribute to the fund.
Mr Addae noted that the establishment of the fund had been necessitated by the numerous appeals for support from students in the district to the assembly to enable them to further their education.
“Since my assumption of duty, my office has been flooded with personal appeals and formal application for support of some kind from students to pursue further education and having critically, examined the situation, there is a need to set up the fund,” he stressed.
Mr Addae said there were three schools in the district that were benefitting from the School Feeding Programme, namely Muoho Anglican, Nkrankrom Methodist and Manhyia Primary schools.
He said the assembly was working assiduously for the programme to be extended to more schools .
He announced that the assembly, generated a total of GH¢224,376.23 internally from property rates, fees, fines, among others, at the end of June 2009, and added that plans were afoot to rake in more revenue locally to help the assembly to meet its development agenda.
Mr Kwadwo Nyamekye-Marfo, Brong Ahafo Regional Minister in his address, commended the assembly for taking the decision to establish an educational fund to support students from the district to pursue higher education.
He noted that 10, 751 teachers, out of the total of 21, 554 from the kindergarten up to teacher training college in the region are untrained.
This, he said, had been a major contributory factor to the poor performance of students at the basic levels of education, thereby denying many of them entry into tertiary institutions across the country; it also accounted for the low population of students from the region in these schools .
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo therefore called on the various municipal and district assemblies in the region to sponsor more students to teacher training colleges to come back to take up teaching appointments at the basic levels of education across the region to help reverse the trend and also help get more students from the region into the tertiary institutions.
He added that the assemblies which would sponsor students from their various areas of jurisdiction to the teacher training colleges should bond the beneficiaries, so that they would come back to serve in their communities after completion.