A national presidential hopeful of the Graduates Students Association (GRASAG), Mr. Richmond Yaw Yeboah, is calling on government to as a matter of urgency pay graduate students their theses grant and bursaries as the delay in payment is having adverse effect on them.

The grant, which has been in arrears since the last academic year, with a new academic year beginning in August, according to him, is negatively affecting graduate students with some students resorting to bank loans which come with high interest payment rate .

Such students, according to him, have no option but to accept such loans with high interest payment from their creditors so as to meet deadlines set by their supervisors.

“There have been times students who originally enrolled as M.phil students ended up with M.A and M.ed certificates not because they were lazy or academically weak but they did not have the money to go to the field to gather data in order to complete the work within the stipulated period of study and so had to asked by the school to step down and take the MA or M.ed certificate,” he told Starrfmonline.com.

He explained that those who were lucky to have access to the loan facilities cannot even stay on the campuses to go about their academic duties freely due to their inability to pay back the said loans with their creditors always after them to repay.

“On my tour of the various campuses, I came across students who had to skip classes and also sleep somewhere else from their hostels as creditors were after them for their money and you can imagine how such a person can get the peace of mind to study and do research. A lot of these students aren’t working too. The only way they can pay back such loans is when the grants and bursaries are paid. So it is a serious thing,” he lamented.

Mr. Yeboah reiterated that there is indeed a growing number of students who are totally abandoning their programmes of study as such graduate students did not have the capacity to attract the high loan facilities.

He indicated that the immediate release of the theses grant and bursaries by government will help save the future of such graduate students as that is the only hope they have in financing their education.

He added that the country will stand to gain immensely when the payment is made than when it is withheld as graduate research work has the potential of providing a viable blue print to develop the country.

The 33-year-old media practitioner and final year Master of Philosophy in Development Studies student at the Institute of Development Studies, University of Cape Coast, promised to refocus the role of GRASAG in the country so as to make it meaningful to industries thereby attracting sponsorship to support graduate research in the country.

This, he said, will be done through workshops, symposia, exhibitions among others to highlight graduate research works and findings so industry also benefits from such research discoveries and findings.

Source: Ghana/starrfmonline.com/103.5FM/Kwaku Baah Acheamfour

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