April 24, 2024

 

Former president of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has underscored the importance of female education in Africa to propel development.

She advocated for free education across Africa to expand and ensure young women get access to education irrespective of geographical location.

In an exclusive interview with Bernard Avle on Point of View on Citi TV, the former president, however, said it must fall in line with the implementing country’s budget.

In Ghana’s situation, Madam Sirleaf said the Finance Minister will be the best person to value and ensure the successful implementation of free education.

“It is very important that all women have the opportunity to education and that is the basis for understanding and knowledge you need that to chart your own path to your goals and this is why when you find many of our children in Africa that are out of school for whatever reason, it is something we must put attention on and find where resources have been spent educating people, those countries tend to succeed much better in promoting their development goals.

“But the Finance Minister [Ken Ofori-Atta] will have to say that, it needs to be free but you have to make sure that you balance it well in your budget, and in making it free, one must ensure that you bring the quality to it and that those who are going to have the benefit of free education use it properly, use it not only to expand and increase their knowledge but use it for the good of society in their own interaction and relationship with others.”

She also said though there is a need for free education in Africa, governments must set parameters on who should benefit from such initiatives.

“When you make a policy that is encompassing, you say free education, sometimes it’s hard to say who’s the one who is qualified to enjoy this free education. That means, one must understand the household derivatives, one must understand, how you draw the line.

“One must tie into academic excellence to make sure that those who benefit are qualified in terms of their own performance in school, and all of that. So it’s difficult but I do believe that every country has to have free education for the many who don’t have families that are able to support them. Education is a fundamental right for all individuals.”

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