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26.04.2007 General News

Police investigate threat on Legon campus

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The Legon Police Command says it is investigating a threat to the lives of lecturers and their families by a shadowy group which claims it is protesting the University's new residential policy of in-out-out-out that gives official residence to only the first year students.

Deputy Superintendent of Police Michael Tecku said on Thursday that he had also reported the threat to the National Security.

He said he received a copy of the letter written by the unknown Militant African Youth Against Neo-colonialism on Wednesday,April 25,2007 and informed the Vice Chancellor, Professor Clifford Nii Tagoe accordingly.

One of the letters which had the headline Operation BHABOTOLD was addressed to the Head of the Department of Archaeology, Dr. Kodjo Gawua.

The writers claim there would be balloting for their victims and their actions would start with the “unlucky one” in 72 hours.

The letter which the group claimed was signed with blood reads: “Your silence on a sensitive issue as the proposed in-out-out-out residential policy has only made you an ally of the Vice Chancellor's imperialist.We have categorically stated that the content of the policy, its timing and modus operandi are all with sinister motive.

“You know that quality university education goes beyond writing examinations, but that is what you are bent on doing despite our calls for a general boycott, until that neo-colonialist policy is withdrawn.”

The letter states that for this reason, the lecturer and/or family have become targets for “Operation BHABOTOLD”. This, it added, meant acid attacks against the lecturer and his family, arson on the home, car and office; maiming and kidnapping.

“We shall make you an example of history,” the letter said.

The President of the University of Ghana Students' Representative Council, Ms Louise Serwaa Donkor said the executives had decided that students should write the examinations and later continue to discuss the new in-ou-out-out policy introduced by the University authorities.

The Police have beefed up their strength at the Legon Police Command where Police water cannon, is among vehicles that have been brought.

The Pro-Vice Chancellor, Professor Kwesi Yankah said that there was no trouble on the campus. “Everything is calm,” he said, adding that there was no disturbance.

He said examinations had started and the authorities would make sure that students writing their papers were protected.

Prof. Yankah warned that any student who refused to write their examinations would be given Grade X.

Students of the University of Ghana last week staged a demonstration to protest the decision of the authorities to change the present residential policy from in-out-out-in to in-out-out-out.

Under the previous policy, students had official residential accommodation in the first and final year students.

The authorities argue that they arrived at that decision because of pressure on official residential accommodation.

The Government on Wednesday urged students of the University of Ghana to remain calm while government discusses their concerns about the new residential policy with the authorities with a view to addressing them.

A statement signed by Papa Owusu-Ankomah, Minister of Education, Science and Sports in Accra said government had received a petition by the students on the subject and was considering their concerns.

"Meanwhile, Government urges students to remain calm under the circumstances while Government discusses these concerns with the University authorities with a view to addressing them," it said.

Source: GNA

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