The Ministry of Food and Agriculture has provided some form of relief to some 2000 students of the various agricultural colleges under investigations by the Bureau of Nationals Investigations (BNI) for squandering allowances mistakenly paid to them.
After meetings with school authorities and the Controller and Accountant General’s Department, the sector Minister, Alhaji Mohammed Limuna Muniru, directed that the monies be deducted from the students’ remaining allowances.
The students were given till the end of April to refund an average amount of GHc8,000 each into a Bank of Ghana Account or face arrest.
Each student was paid GHc9,000 after protesting delays in payment of allowances but were ordered to refund after another sum of GHc11,000 was mistakenly paid into their accounts. For failing to refund, they were sacked from their campuses and threatened with arrest.
But the President of the Agriculture College Students Union, Samuel Asare, who met with the Ministry of Agriculture revealed that the students would be refunding the money from their allowances.
“They will keep on paying us from the Controller and Accountant General’s Department and they will form a committee that will bring out payment plans which will determine how much to debit from every month so that we know the period from which will be used to cover the debit.
Now we are to receive GHc 461 across all the five colleges,” he explained. Given that the final year students have just five months left to leave school, Mr. Asare indicated that their National Service allowance would be debited till they finish refunding the amount.
“They will keep on taking it from our service until the amount is covered. The second years have more than one year till they complete their programme and they will keep on taking it from now until they finish with the amount.”