Members of Parliament have condemned the publication of the recent controversial textbook, saying its fueling ethnocentrism.
Speaking in Parliament, Mr Peter Nortsu-Kotoe, MP for Akatsi North said they have taken notice of the public outrage and condemnation against the publisher’s divisive content.
“It is important to state unequivocally that as the Volta Regional Caucus, we find the contents of these books most distasteful, backward, unacceptable and most reprehensible.”Peter Nortsu-Kotoe
In a statement on the floor of Parliament, Mr Nortsu-Kotoe, the Ranking Member on the Educational Committee; described the publication as “part of a grand scheme by certain individuals to deliberately denigrate; vilify, indoctrinate and poison the minds of people against the Ewe ethnic group.”
Furthermore, he called on the Ministry of Education to immediately withdraw the books from the schools and bookshops. Again, he said the publishers should be made to suffer the necessary sanctions to serve as a deterrent to others. Mr Nortsu-Kotoe also noted that, political leaders make derogatory remarks about Ewes which is mostly taken for granted.
“The last straw that broke the camel’s back is the derogatory remarks in a number of textbooks; written for use in the basic schools in the country.”Peter Nortsu-Kotoe
Ethnic groups have unique features
Moreover, he said every ethnic group has unique features, characteristics, values and norms. And also cultural identity such as traditional deities that were cherished and preserved.
“Therefore, it is naive for the publication of textbooks that tend to portray the Ewe ethnic group as a voodoo worshipping people.”Peter Nutorkoe
Furthermore, Mr Nortsu-Kotoe called on the publishers of the book: History of Ghana by Badu Nkansah Publications, Textbook 3, to take note that the Volta Region has rich cultures including rite to succession of chiefs and nowhere in the Ewe land had a ballot been cast to select a chief.
“Ewes have defined traditional steps and rites like any other tribe for succession to the chieftaincy stools.”
Publishers must be brought to book
Also, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, MP for North Tongu adding his voice said, the claim by the publishers that they did not know how the books got to the market could not be true.
However, he criticised the National Council for Curriculum Assessment (NaCCA) for letting the country down. He posited that the council was not diligent in its scrutiny of the textbooks.
The North Tongu MP suggested that the Minister of Education, NaCCA officials and publishers needed to appear before the Educational Committee of Parliament to provide answers.
Ghana publishers association apologize
On the other hand, the Ghana Publishers Association has apologised to Ghanaians for the poor work done. On the History of Ghana Textbook 3, by Badu Nkansah Publications,which portrayed Ewes in a negative manner.
The Association in a presser called for calm and has assured the public of its commitment to apply its internal disciplinary mechanisms to the publisher.
“The Association has been following recent issues in respect of some textbooks published for schools in Ghana. We have observed the History of Ghana – Textbook 3, one such book of the current public concern. And we acknowledge that some aspects of its content are in bad taste.”
The statement indicates over the past few months, the Association has been working closely with the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NaCCA). A State Agency responsible for the approval of books for pre-tertiary institutions. To ensure the right processes for approving the content of textbooks.
Additionally, the Association indicates they have achieved a lot of successes and was optimistic that the situation faced now would not happen again. Ethnocentrism ethnocentrism