The Ghana Scholarship Secretariat (SCHOLSEC) has been accused of defaulting on the payment of thesis grants and bursaries due to postgraduate students for the past three years.
Former President of the Graduate Students Association of Ghana (GRASAG), Raphael Apetorgbor said the SCHOLSEC is yet to complete payments of the bursary and thesis grants to graduate students from 2019/2020 to the 2020/2021 academic year.
Mr. Apetorgbor also expressed fret over the inability of the secretariat to fulfill its financial obligations to graduate students in the payment of bursary and thesis grants for the 2021/2022 academic year to aid their research work.
He said the delay by the government has made it difficult for most students to complete their academic research as a result of a lack of funding which is inadequate and has resulted in students being unable to submit their thesis for graduation.
“The Government of Ghana’s conception of research bursaries to aid graduate research in the country demonstrates the fact that governments over the years appreciate the importance of postgraduate education and research to our national economy. However, the current response from the government is frustrating our research work,” Mr. Apetorgbor said.
Mr. Apetorgbor appealed to the government to increase their bursaries and thesis grant by at least 100% due to the high cost of living standard.
He explained that the current amount between GH¢ 450 and GH¢900 per graduate, is woefully inadequate for quality research.
The former president of GRASAG also expressed fear that their bursaries for the next academic year may delay since previous bursaries and thesis grants have not been paid.
The annual bursary and thesis grants are among five (5) types of scholarships for local public universities and technical universities under the local tertiary scholarship awards of the Scholarships Secretariat of the Republic of Ghana. The Secretariat was established in January 1960 as an extra-ministerial body under the Office of the President.
Its main role is to administer and exercise central control over scholarship awards for capacity building to ensure effective manpower support for the national development agenda.
The thesis grants are payments made to PhD, MPhil, and MA/Postgraduate Diploma students working on their research for one academic year, while the bursary grants are paid uniformly across the board annually to mitigate the course cost of postgraduate education.