One hundred and seventy four embattled students of St John of God Nursing Training School are heading to court to seek justice over the alleged deceitful act by management of the school.
This was after they had realised that the school was not accredited to operate or affiliated to any health training institution in the country.
They said the successful candidates in October last year were asked to pay GH¢3,100 each semester and although the authorities claimed that the school was accredited and managed by the Catholic Church in Ghana, the National Accreditation Board, the Catholic Church and the Ghana Health Service had denied that assertion.
Loans & sale of land/cocoa farm
One of the students who looked devastated said he sold his cocoa farm to raise the fees. Another student said he sold a parcel of land and secured a loan to raise money to pay the fees.
“We are surprised that with all the report about the school, security agencies have not taken any action to arrest the operators of the illegal health training institution.They are walking free after taking our ¢3,105.00,” he said.
Another student, who gave her name only as Abena, said after all the assurances given them by the owner, one Mr Frimpong, which saw thousands of prospective students buying unapproved forms and successful ones numbering 174 paying an amount of ¢3,105.00 each as fees, the school was not accredited.
“We were told that the school has accreditation from National Accreditation Board (NAB) and clearance from Nurses and Midwifery Council only for us to realise that it was a hoax and we had been defrauded,” she said.
Abena said they were given admission letters to report to school in October last year, but were not indexed by the Nurses and Midwifery Council.
“We continued to ask the school authorities questions, and were told that we were affiliated to Berekum Nursing Training School. Our checks again revealed that it was not true,” she said.
She said getting to the end of the semester, they were told the school was affiliated to the University of Cape Coast and run in partnership with the Catholic Church.
“This prompted us to move to the health directorate and the church but they both disassociated themselves from the school.
“We have no option than to go to court, I can tell you that my mother, who is a trader in the market in Accra, took a loan to enable me to pay the school fees and I don’t know what to tell her now,” she said.
We were lured
The students said they were lured, following extensive advertisements inviting prospective students for a Diploma in Nursing programme, to buy admission forms for GH¢100 each.
The Sefwi District Director of Health, Dr Francis Takyie, told the Daily Graphic that the Ministry of Health through the district office warned the school about the illegality and asked the management to stop.
“The ministry did not approve of the form that was sold by the school but the school designed its own admission forms and sold them to unsuspecting students,” he said.
It will be recalled that the Daily Graphic in its January 6, 2015 edition published that the fate of 270 students of the St John of God Nursing Training College at Sefwi Asafo was unknown since the school was yet to be accredited.
During a courtesy call on Mr Paul Evans Aidoo, the Western Regional Minister, by the Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Victor Asare Bampoe, the former appealed to the Ministry of Health to intervene and ensure the school’s accreditation in order to safeguard the future of the students.
NAB responses to the two ministers
But in its response in the January 13, 2015 edition of the Daily Graphic, the Executive Secretary of NAB, Mr Kwame Dattey, bemoaned the pressure that political authorities exerted on the NAB to give accreditation status to unqualified institutions.
“This negative behaviour, if allowed to persist, will cripple the education sector at the tertiary level.
“This is not the first time we are seeing this. This kind of attitude should never be tolerated because it gives other schools the courage to follow suit,” Mr Dattey said in an interview with the Daily Graphic.
Source: Graphic Online