THE Minority in Parliament has waded into the controversy at the University of Education, Winneba, demanding that the Vice-Chancellor (VC) of the university, Professor Anthony Afful-Broni, and the University’s Council Chairman, Professor Nicholas Abakah resign.
In the view of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) lawmakers, the resignation of the duo is the only means by which normalcy can be restored to the school which was closed down on March 4.
The UEW which has been in the news for the wrong reason, was shut down after students demonstrated over the dismissal of about 23 lecturers and 10 other staff members.
A government delegation led by the Member of Parliament for the area, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, moments after the Central Regional Minister, Kwamena Duncan declared the school shut, said a truce had been reached for the dismissed persons to be restored.
This was, however, repudiated by the University Council which upheld the dismissals saying laid down procedures were followed in relieving the affected persons from their posts.
These contradictions, the Minority said showed that the inherent troubles that led to the closure of the school persisted hence the need for the two Professors to resign.
In a statement issued in Accra on Friday and copied the Ghanaian Times, the Minority said having followed the developments at the UEW “we cannot but conclude that the best road to normalcy as far as UEW is concerned, is the resignation and or removal of the Council Chair and Vice-Chancellor.”
According to the Minority, Prof. Afful-Broni and Abakah had their “personal interest above due process, the interest of students and the institution they have been assigned to manage” and must go.
Signed by Peter Nortsu Kotoe, the Ranking Member on the Education Committee, the statement argued that information available to them and in other public space underscored the fact that the conduct of Profs Afful-Broni and Abakah does not “fly in the face of the statutes of the very same institution they have failed to manage, but border on criminality and plain corruption.”
Professor Afful-Broni, the Minority observed was “undoubtedly responsible for the negative developments on the UEW campus and therefore cannot be part of the solution.
“Unfortunately, the posture and conduct of the Chair of the University Council has not been helpful [because] it was expected that Prof. Abakah would have led efforts towards peace and reconciliation.”
The caucus further alleged that it has cited a letter from the Controller and Accountant General dated December 13 indicated of a budget overrun for compensations to the tune of GH¢5.3 million.
Demanding that the Economic and Organised Crimes Office launched a full scale investigation into financial embezzlement at the university, the Minority called on the Pope, the head of the Catholic Church to reassign Prof. Afful-Broni, a priest himself, to save the Church from further embarrassment.
It also called for the reinstatement of Professor Avorke as the VC of the school in line with an EOCO finding which cleared him of any wrong doing.
Professor Afful-Broni succeeded the removed Professor Mawutor Avoke last year after the latter was accused of indulging in illegalities as upheld by a Winneba Court.
A strong advocate for Professor Avoke’s dismissal and MP for the area, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, who fought the removed Professor in court, has since made a u-turn accusing Professor Afful-Broni of misleading him.
BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI