Sam Garba, a former administrator of the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) has slammed the Auditor-General, Daniel Yao Domelevo for being unfairly mischievous with the latter’s recent report on the secretariat’s administration of scholarships in the country.
According to him, the Auditor-General was selective in capturing the supposed ‘unlawful beneficiaries’ in the report when in fact there were a lot more beneficiaries, raising concerns about the credibility of the report.
The Auditor-General’s department in a performance audit report has implicated the GETFund Secretariat in the disbursement of scholarships.
GETFund’s annual report spanning from the year 2012 to 2018 reveals that the secretariat spent GHC425,698,937 on scholarship on 3,112 persons.
Out of the number, 2,217 persons did not necessarily deserve the scholarship schemes they were awarded.
The report further suggests that a whopping GHC1.8 million of the funds was spent on awardees who were not prepared to pursue further studies at the time of applying for the scholarships.
Additionally, an amount of GHC449,000 was paid as tuition fees to six universities; five in the UK, one in Dubai on behalf of six beneficiaries who did not enroll in the schools at all. The secretariat subsequently paid over 700,000 cedis for the same beneficiaries to attend different universities.
Persons who have been captured as beneficiaries include Education Minister, Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Deputy Majority Leader, Adwoa Safo, a deputy Minister for Agric, Kennedy Osei Nyarko, a lecturer with UCC, Prof John Gatsi and the Executive Secretary of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, Prince Armah.
The Auditor-General in his report among other things noted that GETFund “breached the object of the fund and administered the scholarship themselves” adding that it “did not establish any systems, policies and procedures to ensure the economic, efficient and effective use of public funds.”
But Mr Garba in an interview with Accra-based Citi FM believes the report is skewed, demanding the whereabouts of some other members of Parliament who were not captured.
“Beneficiaries are from both sides of the house. The records are in the GETFund. They come with a letterhead from Parliament asking for sponsorship,” he explained.
“The auditors saw them, so why do you pick some and leave some.
“You choose what suits you and leave others out. The Auditor-General should ask them. Whom did they leave out? They know those they left out,” he said.