Twenty-five needy, brilliant Muslim students have been presented with cheques totalling GH¢37,500 to enable them to pursue various degree courses in Ghanaian universities under the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) scholarship scheme.
The support is coming from funds recovered from loans to beneficiaries who have already graduated.
Last year, 25 students benefitted from the IDB scheme, which is aimed at making it easy for needy Muslim students to receive high and quality education and ultimately help bring about socio-economic development to Muslim communities in Ghana.
The amount for last year was GH¢25,200.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony in Accra, the Chairman of the IDB scholarship programme, Alhaji Rahim Gbadamosi, announced that the IDB in Jeddah was still awarding scholarships to Ghanaian youth under the programme and that the total number of scholarships awarded last year was 50, amounting to $63,750 or GH¢127,000.
The IDB is supporting 48 students this year with about GH¢122,400, bringing the total amount spent by the IDB on needy Muslim students in the past two years to GH¢250,000.
So far, 312 Ghanaian youth have benefitted from the programme since its inception.
According to Alhaji Gbadamosi, a former Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES) and one-time Registrar of the Islamic University College at East Legon, the IDB, with its headquarters in Jeddah, had been supporting the programme for the past 27 years, adding that its main concern was that the graduates should refund their loans, as stipulated in the conditions of the award, so that others in similar circumstances could also benefit from the scheme.
He stressed that the IDB was not interested in anything which amounted to creating an elite class of graduates who were insensitive to the plight of the needy in their own societies.
In his contribution, Brother Hudu Mogtari, a member of the Board of Trustees of the scheme, reminded the beneficiaries that it was supposed to be a grant to the Muslim community but an interest-free loan to be paid back into a trust on completion of studies and only when the beneficiary was gainfully employed.
He charged the beneficiaries to study hard to ensure success at the end of their courses.
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