Parliament has invited the Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, to answer questions on revelations in The Fourth Estate‘s investigative documentary “School Placement for Sale.”
Dr. Adutwum is expected to appear before the Education Committee of Ghana’s Parliament on Thursday, February 2, 2023.
The ranking member on the Education Committee, Peter Nortsu Kortoe, told The Fourth Estate: “When the release of the video came out, we also watched and we have been speaking with people, so the chairman and I decided that we should invite the minister to the committee as quickly as possible to brief us on the development.”
Mr Nortsu Kortoe said the invitation of the minister was based solely on The Fourth Estate investigations. He said the committee would also be interested in the report of an internal investigative committee at the Ministry of Education on corruption in the 2022 school placement. The committee, he said, would want “to find out what measures the minister is putting in place to forestall such occurrences in the coming placement.”
The Ministry of Education launched an investigation into the school placement fraud last year and presented its report to the sector minister, but the report has since not been published nor its recommendations implemented. The investigation was instigated by an alert from the National Security Ministry over allegations of corruption in the school placement.
This became public after The Fourth Estate investigations into the 2022 school placement fraud. The investigation uncovered how a syndicate sold admission slots to students who wanted placement in Ghana’s most-sought after senior high schools.
In one instance, the syndicate demanded and took GHS8,500 to change placement from Accra Wesley Girls to Aggrey Memorial Zion School. The syndicate also demanded and took GHS 11,000 and changed placement from Aburi Presbyterian Senior High School to Mfantsiman Girls Senior High School.
Our investigation revealed that Rachel, a member of the syndicate could not have placed a student into Mfantsiman Girls without the approval of the Minister of Education or the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, the only two individuals with passwords to Category A schools.
How the names of students got to the Education Minister or the GES Director-General for placement into category A school is easy to find, according to the Education Minister, Dr Yaw Adutwum.
Dr. Adutwum said only the office of the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service and the Ministry of Education had access to category “A” schools in the placement system. Our checks revealed that access to such category’s placement was limited to only two individuals; the Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum and the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, Prof. Kwasi Opoku Amankwa.
Prof. Amankwa, however, told The Fourth Estate that he was logged out of the system only a week after placement started and he was denied access to make any placement or see what was happening at the backend.
With Prof. Amankwa removed, it means, only Dr. Adutwum had access to the system and could effect the placements for the Category “A” schools.
The police have so far arrested eight persons in relation to The Fourth Estate documentary, but none of them is a staff of the Ministry of Education or the Ghana Education Service.
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