Calm must return to UEW Campus

The University of Education, Winneba (UEW) has for the past week been embroiled in confusion following the dismissal of three lecturers and other staff.

The university has not known peace since the former Vice-Chancellor, Professor Mawutor Avoke and six others were earlier dismissed.

The latest dismissal that involved Professor Ephraim Avea Nsoh, Principal of the College of Languages Education at the Ajumako Campus, Dr Frimpong Kaakyire Duku, the local president of the University Teacher Association of Ghana (UTAG) and Dr Emmanuel Sarpong, a former alumni president, who was representing the alumni on the University Council, threw the university into chaos as students demonstrated against the dismissals.

For three days, the students demonstrated on campus calling for the dismissed lecturers and other staff to be reinstated.

The matter was made worse when the police were said to have moved in to restore calm but rather were confronted by stone-pelting students.

The police in reaction were reported to have shot teargas and fired warning shots to disperse the students.

 When that failed, the Central Regional Security Council (REGSEC) was said to have ordered the indefinite closure of the university.

The students of the Winneba and Ajumako campuses of the university were given 6pm deadline on Friday, to vacate their halls of residence as well as the premises of the university.

It is unfortunate that the university has been plunged into confusion following the decision to dismiss the lecturers and other staff.

What is happening at the UEW is unhealthy and unnecessary.

 Observing from afar and going through the reports the Ghanaian Times has carried since the impasse began, we believe that the current situation could have been averted.

 Lack of understanding, mistrust and non-adherence to the rules and regulations governing the university played a key role in bringing the university to this point.

We are particularly disappointed that the university, after being offered counsel by President Nana Addo Dankwa to pursue reconciliation did not heed the advice.

We are certain that if the University Council and other stakeholders had sought reconciliation with all parties in the initial impasse, the situation would have been different today.

Thankfully, however, the University Council and other stakeholders are expected to meet today to discuss among other things, the reinstatement of the dismissed staff and the re-opening of the university.

We are hopeful that the meeting would be able to resolve all issues so that the dismissed staff can be reinstated and the university re-opened for academic and non-academic work to go on.

We urge the students to exercise restraint as efforts are made by the authorities to resolve the impasse.

The university authorities must for the sake of peace, soften their stance and ensure an open and frank dialogue aimed at restoring calm at the university.

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