Former President Jerry John Rawlings has rejected the Akufo-Addo government’s decision to rename the University of Development Studies (UDS) after him.
Government in the controversial draft public universities bill that has received criticism is seeking to rename five public universities in the country after prominent statesmen.
Per section 47 of the bill yet to be tabled before parliament, UDS which was established in 1992 as a multi-campus university will be known as Jerry John Rawlings University for Development Studies.
But the former president has written to the Minister of Education to reject the offer.
A statement issued Monday explained Mr Rawlings has taken “a long-standing principle not to have national monuments and facilities named after him”.
He said when President Nana Akufo-Addo’s decision to rename UDS after him was first brought to his attention in 2017 by the Minister of Education, he [Rawlings] “politely declined the offer” based on that principle.
Earlier in 2015, he said he had based on the same grounds rejected a government decision at the time to rename the Offshore Cape Three Points Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel after him.
The statement said consequent to his longstanding principle, he has “kindly requested that the re-naming of UDS after him be withdrawn from the draft bill to be submitted to Parliament”.
Mr Rawlings then thanked President Akufo-Addo and all those who in diverse ways are keen on recognizing his contribution to the development of education in the country.
In December 2013, the University named its Nyankpala Campus library after Mr Rawlings in recognition of his contribution towards the establishment of the UDS in May 1992.
A bust of the former president was thus unveiled at the university campus