The KNUST branch of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG), has subsequently set up a five-member committee to ‘critically assess’ the Public Universities Bill which the Ministry of Education has submitted to all public universities to make inputs before it is laid in Parliament for approval.
Vice President of UTAG-KNUST, Prof. Charles Ofosu Marfo said the association will analyze the document and offer its recommendations.
The public Universities bill presented by the Ministry of Education to public universities, has received strong opposition from some individuals and groups including former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Prof. Ernest Aryeetey and the Minority in Parliament.
Prof. Marfo told Accra based Citi FM that the committee will forward an appropriate response and make its position known after critically scrutinizing the document.
He added that some members of UTAG were agitated when they saw some of the provisions in the document.
“…Many people didn’t seem to understand why this should emanate from a Government that seems to believe in democracy, because clearly the document is borne out of an autocracy — somebody sits in a corner, draws something and says that I am going to bind you with it and so people where agitated. Some of the individual clauses there are so bizarre that one wonders why a Government will seek to take away the individual councils of the University and across board give us a nine member council where in which the Government will have a majority stake in it. If it is not just to control the University then what else is it?”
“In fact we have set up a five man committee that as soon as possible they should sit down and look at the the Government document methodically and critically and dissect them, each clause and give an appropriate wish to Government. We understand they claim it is only a draft.”
He maintained that the new bill, when allowed to stand, will control public universities and will not augur well for the future of higher education in public universities.
The meeting in which the committee was tasked was attended by all UTAG members of KNUST, local executives as well vice chancellor and Pro Vice-Chancellor of the University.