Scholarship Misuse Concerns Raised by Former Auditor-General, Daniel Domelevo

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Former Auditor-General, Dominic Yao Domelevo, has raised alarms over the mismanagement of scholarships in Ghana, highlighting a troubling trend where financially well-off individuals are classified as needy and become recipients, diverting resources from genuinely disadvantaged students.


During an appearance on JoyNews’ Newsfile, Mr. Domelevo expressed dismay at the Scholarship Secretariat’s failure to address the ongoing abuse despite audits revealing these issues. He suggested that the Secretariat might have been unaware initially but should have taken action after the audits exposed the misuse of funds.


One of the key concerns raised by Mr. Domelevo is the classification of high-income earners as needy, citing an example where a forum participant argued that a minister earning GH₵25,000 per month should be considered for a scholarship. This, he argued, is unfair when compared to teachers and public servants struggling to make ends meet on much lower salaries.


The recent publication by the Fourth Estate, titled ‘Scholarship Bonanza’, further intensified scrutiny on the issue, revealing beneficiaries closely associated with government officials, including children of the National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and a former Inspector General of Police.


The revelation sparked widespread condemnation, with calls for transparency and accountability within the Scholarship Secretariat. However, the Registrar has defended the Secretariat’s actions, maintaining that they have done nothing wrong.


The misuse of scholarships not only diverts resources away from those who genuinely need them but also perpetuates inequality within the education system. By awarding scholarships based on financial status rather than academic merit and need, the system fails to support the most deserving students.


Moreover, the lack of transparency in the scholarship allocation process undermines public trust and confidence in government institutions. When scholarships are awarded to individuals based on connections or political affiliations rather than merit, it erodes the integrity of the entire system and reinforces perceptions of corruption and favoritism.


To address these concerns, there is a need for comprehensive reforms within the Scholarship Secretariat, including stricter eligibility criteria, transparent allocation processes, and robust oversight mechanisms. Additionally, there should be consequences for those found guilty of misusing scholarship funds, including possible legal action and disciplinary measures.


Furthermore, stakeholders, including civil society organizations, academia, and the media, play a crucial role in holding the government accountable and advocating for equitable and transparent scholarship policies. By raising awareness about the misuse of scholarships and putting pressure on authorities to enact meaningful reforms, they can help ensure that scholarship funds are allocated fairly and effectively to support the most deserving students.


Ultimately, addressing the misuse of scholarships requires a collective effort from all stakeholders to uphold the principles of fairness, transparency, and accountability in the distribution of educational resources. Only through concerted action can Ghana’s scholarship system be reformed to truly benefit those in need and promote social mobility and equal opportunity in education.

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Source: Myjoyonline

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