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17 June 2017 | Opinion/Feature

UEW Saga: A Case Of Witch Hunting Or Cleaning The System

Inusah Zanjina
UEW Saga: A Case Of Witch Hunting Or Cleaning The System

Ndoo, have you heard that a prestigious university has been shutdown due to a court injunction placed on the activities of some top officials in the school? Tried as much as i can, i just cannot fathom the modus operandi the school used to arrive at such a decision.However, i have come to learn that procrastination of issues has led to this. And have you also heard what the plaintiff's reliefs thereby sought are? These matters have kept my little brain dancing Agbadza like Torgbe Afede's royal flowers in the volta.

Truth be told, this matter has been long coming and we have been waiting so long to write about it. The case of UEW is now a drama of confusion for almost all the students that even a renowned confusionist cannot pull them out of it. Whiles a section of them think that this is the usual political witch-hunting that has bedeviled our fourth republic, a number of them see it as a good way of cleaning the system of corruption, nepotism and favouritism in our public institutions.

Just yesterday, I had one of my colleagues opining that the court would not be so daft as to grant the plaintiff the reliefs:especially the one that sought to discredit all Diploma,Undergraduate and other degrees awarded by the university. Well, i think that we are talking about law here and anything might happen.

i first saw an article that insinuated that all was not well with the governing council, the university and its officials way back in 2015. At that time, i thought the state could have taken due diligence to delve deep into the matter. However, the seeming lackadaisical leadership we had in this country as at then overlooked this issue and made it pass under the bridge.

Then again, I saw another write-up by Salifu Alhassan Bawah, in April this year also pointing to the same thing: corruption, nepotism, gross mismanagement and the case of an "expired" governing council. Thereon, I thought the state, with all its legislative instruments would have started a serious investigation into this matter yet that one too was treated with the same "I don't careesm" attitude we have in Ghana. Suddenly, the whole state became alive when an individual by name Supi Kwayera brought the brimstones on the university by taking them to the Winneba High Court.

How reluctant and lackadaisical can we ever be as a people, a nation? We wait for effects or consequences to be felt before we act. Now a whole university is on shutdown albeit temporarily by a court because we missed just one simple step which could have curbed this. An investigation!!! A thorough scrutiny of the issues which were raised in the articles by Salifu Bawah and that of the MP of Effutu constituency, Afenyo Markin. This would have set matters right without anybody having to twist it to political lines. And if there really is a rot as opined by the above mentioned individuals, why can't we involve our BNI or EOCO to look into this matter?

Instead of allowing this our "go slow" judiciary system to indirectly cause a "shutdown" to a university as prestigious as UEW, why don't the necessary authorities look into the matter. Let us see if there exists a provision in the university's constitution that makes room for other officers to act in the unlikely absence of the said officials the court ordered to step aside for a while. If there exists no provision like that, i think it is not beyond the powers of parliament or the entity that is responsible for enacting laws for our public universities to quickly convene a meeting and see to it that such provisions are put in place.

This would help ease the tension that have built up among thousands of sandwich students who are currently on campus and willing to study. On the revocation of the governing council's decisions after its supposed expired tenure, the state should as a matter of urgency, be ready to deal with the outcome by making sure that one of the public universities in Ghana is on standby to validate the certificates that this council and its appointed officials issued after the expiration of its term. Let us not wait till the court says something else before we say "Fi".

In all this, Ndoo, I know the truth of the matter would surely come to light. Questions of whether there was sole sourcing of contracts, whether the school's WIFI system is nonexistent, whether there is a justified/unjustified 650 Ghcedis added to the School of Business students' fees, whether the said BBA graduands were charged for a supervision on their internship to which the supervisors never came among others as contained in those articles, would be laid to rest if the state intervenes in this matter.

Till then, Ghanaians shall await to see and hear whether this is just a case of political witch-hunting or a matter of cleaning the system. Ndoo, you and I know that he who holds the feet of a vulture cannot in his right senses expect his hands not to smell of faeces. UEW shall rise again. I shall be back!!!

Inusah Zanjina
(Teacher and a social commentator)
Contact me: [email protected]

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