'One student one tablet' policy is doable - Haruna Iddrisu

Haruna Iddrisu Microphone Labour Relations Minister Haruna Iddrisu says government’s promise to give each student in public schools a tablet is a realistic pledge to revolutionise the teaching and learning.

He explained on Joy FM's Super Morning Show Wednesday, government could use the Education ministry’s Universal Access Fund to provide the high-end device.
Mr Iddrisu was discussing the highlights of the governing National Dmocratic Congress' elections 2016 Manifesto promises presented Tuesday evening by President John Mahama. The president amongst others promised a one-tablet-per-student policy if he wins the elections.
Responding to concerns about access to internet connectivity, Haruna Iddrisu said government has invested heavily in IT infrastructure to make it possible for students fully utilise the devices.
Access to internet will not be limited to developed urban centers, he said "not at all, not at all”. Haruna Iddrisu who was once Communications Minister explained that government has laid adequate fiber optic infrastructure for the policy to succeed.
“We are left with only the western corridor load of fiber extension… you have fibre laid from Ho to Kulungugu in Bawku redundant. We extended fiber to the Upper West region …and so there should not be a problem at all," he stressed.
Ghanaian public schools will be like Turkey where IT has been leveraged to improve learning in school, he indicated.
He said the piloting of the project will be completed in the first year of the President’s second term and a full implementation will follow the next year.
Touching on the economy, the minister echoed President Mahama’s lament that despite the progress made in addressing macroeconomic stability, the opposition keeps selling a negative narrative to the Ghanaian people.
Picking out an example, Haruna Iddrisu noted that after the economy reached fearful levels of a 12% fiscal deficit, government has slashed this figure to to 7.1% of GDP in 2015. The 2016 budget aims to further reduce the fiscal deficit to 5.3% of GDP.
‘You must hail us for managing the deficit’ Haruna Iddrisu courted compliments for the President.
Joy News' Raymond Acquah contributing to the discussion, pointed out that the government cannot expect praise for solving a problem it created in the first place.
The 12% deficit, he reminded Mr. Iddrisu, was created by President Mahama's government through overspending. He said the government had failed to achieve its 2012 manifesto promise to keep the deficit at less than six percent.
The Minister also pointed out that a Eurobond intended to raise $750million ended up oversubscribed by $4billion which he said demonstrates the confidence of the international investor community in the economy.
President John Mahama made the same point during his presentation, pointing out that interest rate of 9.25 percent on the latest Eurobond represented an improvement because a December 2015 Eurobond was obtained at an interest rate of 10.75 percent.
Raymond, however, stressed that this is not quite the case. He said the latest Bond was worse because unlike the 2015 one which is to be repaid over a 15-year period, this month's Eurobond is a 5-year bond which narrows the space for government to raise money and pay back.