Gov’t interference in tertiary educ. causing Ghana to lose ‘fine brain’ – Kojo Yankah

Mr. Yankah

An educationist and former Member of Parliament Kojo Yankah has taken a swipe at government for dabbling in the KNUST crisis that has brought academic activities at the university to a halt.

Following the shutdown of the university over violent protest by students on Monday, October 22, government dissolved the governing council and put in its place a seven member interim council.

The council was given three months to establish the cause of the incident and resolve same as well as ensure the reopening of the school within 14 days.

But government’s action has widely been criticised and caused the University Teachers Association and other key stakeholders to threaten strike.

The Vice Chancellor Professor Obiri Danso has also been asked to step aside.

On the back of the backlash, government on October 29 announced steps to remedy the situation.

Commenting on the issue, Mr. Yankah who is the founder of the African University College of Communication (AUCC) held the governing council of the University should have been allowed handle developments at the KNUST.

“In all the stories published so far, the Governing Council has not been asked to account to the public. So, another VC is axed, and the argument is now heavily politicised. Why can’t Government just allow the Governing Council to take the necessary measures to quieten the storm” he argued.

He said government’s interference is not only “a threat to academic freedom” but also causing Ghana to lose “fine brains in tertiary institutions whose combined experiences could help enrich academic direction of this country”.

Mr. Yankah cited some tertiary institutions, including the University of Education Winneba and the Ghana Institute of Journalism among others who have suffered from one form of political aggression or another in the past 18 months.

He further said government decisions on the matter create an impression that institutions do not matter; something he observed hinders the country from developing.

“How can Ghana develop with weak or insecure institutions. The situation is a sad one for Mother Ghana,” he stated.

Mr. Yankah also called out civil society organizations who jump on such issues.

“Anytime one smells ‘Concerned’ so so and so, there is a political rat somewhere.

The AUCC founder emphasized the need for government to allow institutions work without interference.

By Irene Amesimeku|| Ghana

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