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Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Recently, Actionaid Ghana launched a Report entitled: “Tax, Education Privatization and the Right to Education–Influencing Education Financing in Ghana” in Accra. This report has helped to broaden Ghanaians’ knowledge on how important education and tax are to sustain development.

ActionAid is a global justice federation with a mission to achieve social justice, gender equality and poverty eradication. The organization works in Africa, Asia and Latin America to empower people living in poverty, particularly women, and to address the structural causes of inequality, discrimination and exclusion. Its vision is a just, sustainable and equitable world in which every person enjoys the right to a life of dignity, freedom from poverty and all forms of oppression.

In addition, the launch took place at a National Workshop and Policy Dialogue. Participants at the two-day workshop included representatives from the Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) sector, National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), University of Cape Coast (UCC) and the Tax Justice Coalition (TJC).

Further more, represented at the workshop were the Ghana National Education Coalition (GNEC), Ministries of Finance (MoF) and Education (MoE), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The workshop will provide the opportunity for participants to assess the effectiveness of Ghana’s educational policies and the alternatives available.

Welcoming participants to the meeting, Mr Sumaila Abdul-Rahman, Country Director, ActionAid Ghana, was of the view that children in poor communities could also change the world, but added that that could only happen with quality education that did not discriminate between the rich and the poor. He said to overcome the systemic problems in Ghana’s educational system, policies should be linked to good practices and innovation.

He said as promoters of quality education, ActionAid Ghana was not unaware of the huge financing burden on public education vis-à-vis other equally important and compelling demands on government budget. He pledged the continuous support of civil society in complementing government’s efforts of providing educational infrastructure and advocating for good policies and their effective implementation.

On the Report, the ActionAid Country Director said it was part of the progressive work of ActionAid Ghana on tax justice, education financing and its framework on Promoting Rights in Schools (PRS).

At the event, the Co-ordinator of the Tax Justice Coalition, Mr Benard Anaba, disclosed that 15 countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), including Ghana, Senegal and Nigeria annually gave away US $9.6 billion in tax incentives, Ghana’s share being US $2.27million. Also, Mr Anaba said government would be able to adequately finance quality public education if it could plug the leakages from the tax incentives to multinational companies which incentives he described as needless.

Reports have confirmed that ActionAid has been promoting quality basic education in deprived and marginalized communities in Ghana through the provision of model primary and early childhood educational facilities and various rights awareness campaigns.

Under its PRS programme, ActionAid has tackled the structural causes of low quality education by empowering basic school children to recognize and claim their right to free and compulsory education, non-discrimination, adequate infrastructure, quality trained teachers and learning in a violence-free environment. This has so far improved the quality standard of education in Ghana.

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