Ghanaian students studying in Russia under Government of Ghana scholarships are appealing to the government to pay them their stipends, which have been in arrears for over a year.
The students say the delay in releasing the stipends is affecting their academic performance and making life difficult for them.
Speaking to Citi News, the President of the National Union of Ghanaian Students in Russia, Derick Yamoah Gyasi, said the delay in payment is also making it difficult for the students to access money from home.
“There is an outstanding debt of over a year that is supposed to be paid to students. Our issue now has to do with the relationship between students in Russia and the secretariat who is responsible for the life of students in Russia. The SWIFT system is not working in Russia, so bank transfers are not possible. We are not able to access MoneyGram, Western Union, and all the popular direct money transfer systems that were available in the past. So it becomes difficult to even receive money from home for feeding,” he said.
“The only support we need is the monies that are sent to students to augment their stay here. We have spoken to the Embassy several times and efforts to reach out to the secretariat have proved futile,” he added.
“We will maintain responsible fiscal policies, improve revenue generation, and prioritise the efficient allocation of resources. These measures will ensure that our economic revival efforts are sustainable in the long run,” he said
Mr Ofori-Atta highlighted the significance of swift action and emphasised the pivotal role a revitalised economy played in the well-being of the people.
“We understand the hardships our citizens are facing, and we empathise with their concerns. That is why we are leaving no stone unturned in our efforts to expedite the recovery process,” the finance minister said.
Touching on public-private cooperation, Mr Ofori-Atta stressed the importance of collaboration among the government, private sector, and citizens in achieving the desired socio-economic outcomes.
Mr Ofori-Atta also called upon businesses, investors, and the entire Ghanaian populace to join hands with the government as it embarked on a transformational journey.
During the engagement with the South African leader, the two discussed areas of cooperation towards strengthening existing ties and building a healthy interchange for businesses in Ghana and South Africa.
President Ramaphosa congratulated Ghana on obtaining an IMF deal in record time.
He expressed the confidence that the government and the private sector collaboration would lead to a rapid resolution of the energy challenges currently being experienced in that country.
For his part, Mr Ofori-Atta expressed optimism that such economic cooperation would have a meaningful and mutually beneficial impact on citizens of both countries.
Ghana secured a deal with the IMF on May 17, this year, backed by Extended Credit Facility of $3 billion over three years.
The programme is for restoring macroeconomic stability, ensuring debt sustainability, and laying the foundations for higher and more inclusive growth.
The government requested IMF financial support in early July 2022. The IMF team and the Ghanaian officials engaged in expeditious discussions on a set of policies and reforms that could be supported by an IMF arrangement.
The two sides reached an IMF staff level agreement in December last year on the policies and reforms and on the path towards approval of the programme by the IMF Executive Board.
Since the approval, the first disbursement, equivalent to $600 million, has hit Ghana’s coffers.