Addai, a third year student offering medicine says there are at least 120 others students like him in Algeria. He explained” “From December of last year we haven’t received any allowance neither have we gotten any information from the scholarship secretariat as to when we are going to be paid. Because of our financial problem, we can’t even afford food, books and other important things to facilitate our reasons for being here; which is to study and represent Ghana.”
The scholarship program is a joint government of Ghana and Algeria program, which allows Ghanaian students to offer courses such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, engineering, business and economics.
“According to the scholarship agreement, the government of Ghana is supposed to give a monthly allowance but since December of 2016 we haven’t heard a word from the government concerning when we are going to be paid. This has made schooling here very difficult,” Addai laments.
The students have been facing challenges with their allowances for more than two years now, but it is particularly difficult now since they’ve had to go more than six months without their stipends.
According to the students, all attempts to get the government’s attention have failed. In April 2017, the Union of Ghanaian Students Abroad sent letters to parliament, the scholarship secretariat, ministry of finance, controller and accountant general’s department but they are yet to get any response.
The students have also contacted the Ghanaian embassy in Algeria but according to the embassy, it only relays the information coming from Ghana. “The embassy has also tried to get the government’s attention but nothing so far is coming from Ghana,” Addai added.
“We want the government to pay us our stipends and appropriate steps should be taken to make sure that students don’t go through this again,” Addai and his friends cry out to the government