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Opinion | Sep 5, 2018

The Dismissal Of Prof. Mawutor Avoke Of UEW And Others

By Dawda Eric
Prof. Mawutor Avoke
Prof. Mawutor Avoke

A week ago, my heart was filled with joy following the dismissal of UEW Vice-chancellor and others as a result of disciplinary measures instituted by the governing council of the university. As an alumnus of UEW, I think this is refreshing and before I do touch the substance of the matter currently in the public domain, I will, therefore, commend the governing council for such an immediate action geared towards salvaging the university from the hands of those crooks who took the institution as their bonafide and decided to do things as if it was their maternal inheritance. When I was a junior member of this institution from 2013-2017, some officers within university did not allow me to sleep with their corrupt deals. I took it upon my self to battle these crooks with my little energy. As we speak, I cannot count the number of times I was personally invited by EOCO to assist them to investigate an issue of financial malfeasance against officers of the university in November 2015. I cannot count the number of times I was invited by the BNI for investigation concerning an issue of extortion and thievery as same was published by the Chronicle newspaper in 2016.

Again, I cannot also count the number of times I was invited by the Commission On Human Rights and Administrative Justice in respect of abuse of human right and issues of corruptible tendencies against officers of the university. I cannot also count the number of times I was officially invited by authorities and got humiliated for sacrificing my life to fight the deep-seated ROT in the university. A time came some of my colleagues thought I won't be able to graduate because same people I was fighting are those going to award me a degree as stated in the University of Education Act,2004( Act,672). I did everything humanly possible to ensure that, the institution gets itself cleansed but a time came I was betrayed. I was left alone to endure the attacks that got me injured. The students I was fighting for stood there and watched the institution treat me as an outcast. The SRC I trusted and gave them an opportunity to present their case at EOCO went there to shoot my argument before the anti-graft agency. Recently when I was notified that the investigation has been completed and the docket has been sent to the AG, I pleaded with the SRC led by my very good friend, Tuffour Joseph Clifford to request for the copy of the report under article 21(1)f of the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Ghana, till now SRC hasn't done that.

Let me use this opportunity to remind those who are still dreaming and enjoying because they think I have abandoned the EOCO matter. I still have in possession the acknowledgment of receipt issued to me by the Principal Chief State Attorney, Mr. Agyemang Doudo with Ref AGK/PD/SF.12/15/. At the appropriate time, the matter would be dealt with and that culpable wouldnt get a breathing space. I am surprised as to why these disgruntled individuals in an attempt to court public sympathy are bringing in politics. Why didn't they accuse the previous government of being behind the 2015 EOCO investigation concerning their criminal conducts?

Now let me get back to the ensuing matters and deal with them one after the other. Last year, a citizen of Ghana instituted a civil action against some officers of the university at the Winneba High court on claims of procurement violation and others. Shockingly, the university lawyer didn't go to court to dispute the said claim but went to challenge the LOCUS STANDI of the said person. They filed a motion to get the case struck out on grounds that, the person wasn't clothed with the capacity to institute the said action. The court didn't see the wisdom in their argument so the court dismissed the motion. During the court process, the lawyer for the plaintiff moved a motion to get the VC and others suspended on grounds that, their continuous stay in office was going to have an effect concerning the ongoing case because they could *tamper* with documents relevant to the case in court. The lawyer for the defendant failed to oppose the motion for reasons best known to his incompetence. The court upheld the motion and gave a consequential order. Later UTAG went to the supreme court and challenged the procedure in getting the VC and others suspended.

The supreme court said that the said procedure could only be triggered by an *APPLICATION*. Because the supreme court was mindful of the undisputed substance of the case before the high court in its ruling, the court said the certiorari was only limited to the procedure and not the entire ruling of the high court which found the accused persons guilty of charges of procurement irregularity in the award of contract under the stewardship of those spending officers.

Again, let it be on record that, even before the supreme court ruling, the governing council had already constituted a disciplinary board under section 7(2) of Act,672 to subject the two affected principal officers to disciplinary Process. Also, the other four affected officers were also subjected to the disciplinary process provided for under statute 36 of UEW. The Vice-chancellor and the finance officer failed to subject themselves to this thorough process because, in their minds, they were already guilty of those charges and didn't know why they ought to subject themselves. They were giving an opportunity to be heard but they waived their right to be heard.

The committee after their work recommended to the governing council to get those officers dismissed. The council only acted accordingly with respect to the recommendation so what is the big deal now? corrupt Avoke and co should tell us the big deal in this. Surface to say that, nowhere in their disgraceful cry have they been able to point out an error concerning the process that led to their shameful dismissal. I dare them to come out with any detailed write up for the sake of intellectuality.

Dawda Eric(Equity)
Citizen Vigilance For Justice
4th September 2018

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