The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, (MGCSP) has termed as a practical boost for equal access to education to all including women and girls and welcomed Pres. George Weah’s recent pronouncement on Free Tuition for Public Universities.
The Liberian Leader in his pronouncement on Wednesday, October 24, 2018, indicated that declaring a tuition-free public tertiary education shows his government’s commitment to invest in human capital which will affect the overall growth of the country and economy.
“We believe that no country can develop without investing in the education of its people”.
The Gender Ministry believes that the president’s decision will accelerate the enrollment, retention and completion of more women and girls who have been restricted from acquiring higher education due to financial constraints.
According to a release from the Ministry, the pronouncement serves as a stimulant to achieving Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which speaks to free education for everyone and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG-1, 4 & 5) that point to ending poverty, promoting quality education, achieving gender equality and empowerment for all women and girls.
MoGCSP believes that such initiative is one of the best proposals and a permanent solution on the way to recovery and national development that reflects the equal participation of women, men; boys and girls across the country. “The pronouncement also alleviates the immediate tuition constraints and widens the possibility of achieving higher education and setting a path for developing professional career for women and girls,” the Gender Ministry release noted.
Upon the president’s pronouncement, several students were seen jubilating and expressing excitement on the main campus of the University of Liberia over what they believed has paved the way to acquiring education without financial burden. Pres. Weah in his remark at the University of Liberia Auditorium noted that having a good education is paramount to providing ways to achieve success, adding that education is the key and breeding ground to success which enables a person to think logically and communicate effectively.
“I, therefore, wish to declare tuition-free for all undergraduate students at the University of Liberia as well as all other public universities in Liberia. Now, make use of the opportunity given today to reach your full potential in your educational sojourn”, Pres. Weah said.
At the same time, MGCSP calls on women and girls across the country to take serious advantage of this tuition-free opportunity covering the University of Liberia and all other public tertiary institutions of learning, as it will also enable them acquire the requisite skills to compete in the labor market, hold positions of trust and reduce poverty.
MGCSP urged women and girls to see the President’s pronouncement as a channel to breaking educational barriers which are often caused by poverty, cultural norms and traditional practices.
Meanwhile, MGCSP is encouraging all institutions of learning to ensure the immediate development of progressive legal frameworks that will further guarantee the promotion of quality education services.
The Ministry also lauded the president for his farsightedness in completely abolishing the gap of educational inequality that has served as a hurdle to achieving basic opportunities for both genders.
The President remark at the UL focused on ways young people can make an impact through education and serve as change makers as part of efforts of the implementation of the government’s Pro-Poor agenda.
“The inability of our young people to continue their education is very sad and troubling and has a direct impact on them, and their ability to make a positive contribution to the nation’s growth and development.
By this time, it should be clear to all, that we will never be successful in achieving the goals of our Pro-Poor Agenda if we do not place more emphasis on the development of our human capital. And in so doing, we have to invest in quality education. I believe in education”, Pres. Weah averred.