Authorities of the Ministry of Education (MoE) have announced that public school tuitions can now be paid via the Lonestar Cell MTN Mobile Money platform, which will reduce the burden faced by public school students, who have up to now endure long, tedious queues at banks to transact their school registration and tuition payments.
The platform, launched in collaboration with Lonestar Cell MTN on Thursday, August 9, will enable secondary school students attending government-run schools to pay their tuition from anywhere at any time using the mobile money platform.
Education Minister, Ansu D. Sonii, said the world is changing; therefore the education system must take advantage of the digital technologies that provide convenience, efficiency and accountability. “Records can be maintained and derived most now be in an electronic format,” Minister Sonii said.
Sonii said technology has helped humans save space, reduce paper trail, and introduced efficiency in keeping data as well as the security system of those data.
He said with the the launch of the mobile money fees payment platform, education will have a success story in the shortest possible time, “because the ministry is prepared to live up to the digital standard and its coordinating result will be seen in the Ministry’s performance as they administer the affairs of schools.”
Sonii said the ministry is willing to cooperate with Lonestar Cell MTN in every way to make the mobile money payment a success story for the students.
Latim Da-thong, Deputy Education Minister for Administration, said with the launch of the mobile money fees payment platform, the ministry is certain to improve an effective education system through information and communication technology (ICT).
Da-thong said the partnership between Lonestar Cell MTN and MoE will address several key issues, which include accessibility and affordability for parents, and students.
He added that challenges with the traditional method of paying school fees has always existed in Liberia, but with the introduction of the new system, it will now put an end to all those hurdles.
“With mobile money, a student or parents can sit home and register with Lonestar Cell MTN Mobile Money, pay school fees in the comfort of your living room within a second,” Da-thong said.
He believes that the modern intervention in the school system will speed up registration at the public schools.
“We are currently starting at the secondary level (10th to 12th grades), but we have planned to later focus on the Early Childhood Education, which contains huge number of students,” Mr. Da-thong said.
The mobile money platform is also expected to instantly provide strategic information, such as the number of registered students per school and at each grade level, among other data, which will enable the ministry to have clearer oversight and address public school needs.
Prince D. Chesson, Sr., Lonestar Cell Product, Services and Channel Distribution Manger, said the Mobile Money project is the brain child of Massa M. Dennis, in support of President George Manneh Weah’s Pro-poor vision to improve access to public services via technology.
Mr. Chesson said Liberia cannot move forward without making its services digitized.
He said Lonestar Cell MTN put the system into place to allow MoE take instant record of the number of registered students at various locations across the country.