Ghana’s former Education Minister, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa says the Ghana Education Service (GES) sanctions to some 14 final year students for their misconduct and indiscipline act during the conduct of the ongoing WASSCE for school candidates are harsh, high-handed, whimsical and could prove counterproductive.
The Member of Parliament was among the many who highly condemned the actions of the WASSCE candidates in viral videos but this time he is of the view that the sanctions meted out the students are inconsiderate.
According to Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Ghana Education Service (GES) under the auspices of the Ministry of Education (MoE) could have at least considered the apologies of the students than to bared and dismiss them.
“if there must be punishment, although I take the view that their apologies could have been considered – I have always subscribed to a punishment that reforms and not punishment that destroys”, the Ablakwa said.
In the view of the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, the offending students could be made to sign a bond of good behaviour, allowed to complete the final examinations after which the release of their results may be delayed until surcharging and counselling obligations have been carried out. We do not have to destroy the future of these teenagers.
“While pursuing the reformative punishment I propose, it is absolutely essential that independent investigations are conducted into the circumstances that led to the rather strange expectations and conditions that have brought us to this embarrassing juncture. In other words – who told the students to expect a particular set of questions?”.
“Who assured them of weak and compromised invigilation? Why did some teachers gang up with students to attack WAEC officials? Why does it appear that students were simply not prepared for the WASSCE, what went wrong? These are fundamental issues for which we must seek urgent answers and for which arbitrary destructive punishment does not address.”