Don’t deviate from your core academic mandate – Speaker to GTUC

The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, has advised the Ghana Communication Technology University (GCTU), now known as Ghana Technology University College (GTUC), not to deviate from its core academic mandate. 

Speaker Oquaye said the phenomenon of Ghanaian universities become generalists was unbecoming and the GCTU must not join the fray. 

“They need to be very specific and the body we will want to be known as the university for ICT,” Prof. Oquaye stated. 

The Speaker of Parliament made these remarks in Parliament yesterday during the second reading of the GCTU Bill, 2020. 

The bill is seeking to make the University, which is currently affiliated to the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and the University for Professional Studies, Accra an autonomous one.  

According to Speaker Oquaye, the GCTU must not be a degree awarding institution only but take interest in running Diploma and Certificate programmes. 

If done, Mr Speaker believed, “it will go a long way to help this country with regards to avoiding coordinating and controlling the proliferation of colleges and institutions of ICT.”

According to the Committee on Education’s report to plenary, if passed, the GCTU would become a public institution to feed the nation with the requisite technology brains. 

It said since its establishment in 2006, the GCTU has been at the forefront of providing long and short term education, and training in information communication technology albeit without the requisite legal regulatory framework governing its operations.

“The aims of the university fit into the overall government objectives of leveraging on innovation technology to drive socio-economic development, particularly, having regard to the university’s ambition of having a viable centre for higher education in technology,”  the report said. 

Should the bill be passed, the Committee observed that, the GCTU would provide global consultancy services to both private and public sectors, promote basic and applied research and create an entrepreneurial environment that would support innovation and product incubation development. 

With over 8,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students, the Accra-based school with campuses at Kumasi and Takoradi runs various programmes under three faculties – Engineering, Computing and Information Systems and Information Technology Business. 

The significance of universities in providing the requisite manpower needs for the socio-economic development of every nation, the Committee noted, could not be overemphasized. 

“The Committee, after thorough consideration of the bill, is of the view that a university with a focus on information communication technology would produce skillful workforce that would help speed the productivity gains of the country. 

“Transforming the Ghana Technology University College into a public-funded university would ensure that the University is positioned as a viable centre for higher education in Information Communication Technology,” the Committee said and recommended that its report is adopted in anticipation of the consideration stage of the bill.    

BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI 

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