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UEW students demo over lecturers’ dismissals

PThere is uneasy calm at the University of Education, Winneba (UEW) following the dismissal, alleged victimisation and maltreatment of some staff of the university.

Three of the dismissed staff whose dismissal have generated a lot of controversy are Professor Ephraim Avea Nsoh, Principal of the College of Languages Education at Ajumako, Dr Frimpong Kaakyire Duku, the local President of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) and Dr Emmanuel Osei Sarpong, a former Alumni President, who was representing the alumni on the University Council.

Dr Kaakyire Duku, according to management initiated a court action together with six other staff and said that he did not exhaust the internal structures of the University for settling dispute, before he proceeded to court and used the institutional time to go to court without seeking official permission.

Some students of the university yesterday protested against the dismissal of one of their lecturers alleging that, it formed part of acts of victimisation by the Vice Chancellor, Rev. Fr Prof. Anthony Afful-Broni-led administration.

Yesterday’s protest centred around Dr  Emmanuel Osei Sarpong of the Department of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Sports whose appointment was terminated by the  university administration.  

Some students feel the dismissals are becoming too many as they noted was affecting academic work, explaining that, they would demonstrate until their demands were met. 

“The management should bring him back that is all. Who is going to teach us nutrition?”, they asked. Others also said “We need the immediate reinstatement of the sacked lecturers in the spirit of fairness.”
A visit to the premises of the institution yesterday saw some of the students with red bands occasionally hooting at some individual while others gathered close to the administration block.
The University of Education, Winneba has been embroiled in constant confusion over the past two years leading to the sacking of the then Vice Chancellor, Prof. Mawutor Avoke and six others. 
The dismissal resulted in the university going through a series of litigations at the court.
With the turn of events in the affairs of the institution, the Member of Parliament for Effutu, Alexander Afenyo-Markin is accusing the current leadership of repeating the very mistakes that led to the exit of Prof. Avoke and six others.

The Minister of State in charge of Tertiary Education, Prof. Kwesi Yankah yesterday engaged the authorities and other stakeholders in a crunch meeting in an attempt to resolve the impasse for an enhanced academic work.

After the meeting, Prof. Yankah explained that his visit to the university was not to apportion any blame or take sides with any group or individuals.

He indicated that, the meeting was to listen to the concerns of aggrieved parties as well as management.

He said he had tasked the Governing Council of UEW and management to work towards resolving any differences on campus.

Prof. Yankah further said that, the ultimate aim was for all parties to come on board to address the issues.  

Two past students are also calling for a probe into financial management at the university as they have filed a complaint against the vice chancellor and the finance officer.

The petition filed by Eric Dawda and Eric Akatsi is calling for investigations into an amount of GH¢ 5,769,395.08 authorised by the vice chancellor and finance officer as honorarium.

“The two are responsible for the financial integrity of UEW pursuant to Statute 6 (d) and 10 (b) respectively and for that matter, are accountable as principal spending officers for any item of expenditure incurred by the University,” the petition stated.
The petitioners said “We respectfully consider their conduct in line with the above as inimical and injurious to the University of Education, Winneba.”

FROM DAVID O. YARBOI-TETTEH
           

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