Public Universities Draft Bill Doesn’t Make Sense – Pee Yalley

unicersity bill nonsense
President of the NDC Professionals Forum and Former Ambassador Sam Pee Yalley

Ghana’s former Ambassador to India, Sam Pee Yalley has rubbished the Ministry of Education’s draft bill for Public Universities to provide the procedure for the establishment of Public Universities and principles of managing them.

Mr Pee Yalley who was speaking on Inside Politics on Radio XYZ on Wednesday passionately kicked against passing the bill into law since it will be a recipe for chaos in the public universities.

He contended that if the bill is passed into law there is no way the institutions will be academically independent to be able to serve the purpose for which they were created.

“The government wants to have total control over the universities…This is bad and does not make sense,” he said and explained that some clauses in the bill will give the government access to manupilate admission processes to its advantage.

He said apart from the stifling academic freedom in the public universities, the government wanted to have a centralised admissions process which will give the government the opportunity to determine who gets admission into the institutions or not.

“With that admission process, they [the government] can deny you admission because of reasons known best to them,” he said as he pointed that the bill sought to help those in power.

Citing the protests at Kwame Nkrumah university of science and Technology (KNUST) and the University of Education, Winneba, Mr Pee Yalley said when the government takes total control of the schools, there will be more misunderstandings in the public universities because “government will want a thing done to favour it against what the lecturers may want.”

The draft Bill when passed into law will provide “the legal status of Public universities, the procedure for financing Public universities and administration and supervision of the activities of Public universities and related matters,” according to the Ministry of Education.

The bill has met stiff opposition by academics and some civil society organisations who argue that the bill will mess the smooth administration of the universities.

Apart from the University Teachers Association that has opposed the bill, Political Science lecturer at the University of Ghana (UG), Prof Ransford Edward Gyampo, says the bill when passed will hinder the progress of university staff on the academic ladder.

Prof Gyampo observed that after reading through the bill he realised “…the government is seeking to reduce the composition of the Public University Councils from the average of 15 to 9. With this number, the government wants to appoint more people than other constituents,” the head of European Studies at the University of Ghana added.

He also believes such a law will make lecturers and university administrators “bootlickers” in order to advance on the academic ladder, adding “The Minister of Education can give directives as to how the school should be ran [when the Bill becomes law]”

Controversial Clauses

Clauses 5 and 12, the contentious clauses in the 48-clause bill stipulate among others that the governing body of a Public University is a Council which shall consist of the following nine members appointed by the President:

(a) a chairperson nominated by the President;
(b) the Vice-Chancellor;
(c) four persons nominated by the President, one of whom shall be a woman;

(d) one representative of the registered Unions in the university on rotational basis

(e) one representative of the University convocation elected by the convocation;

(h) one representative of the students of the University, nominated by the

Students’ Union; and
(j) one representative from the National Council for Tertiary Education who shall be a non-voting member.

It also states that the chairperson and other members of the Council shall be appointed by the President in accordance with article 70 of the Constitution.

The President may dissolve and reconstitute the council in cases of emergencies or appoint an interim council to operate for a stated period, according to the draft bill.

Education Ministry

Meanwhile, the Minister of Education, Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh has dismissed reports that government is seeking to stifle the academic freedom of the public universities.

“The President has given his word to all Vice Chancellors, when they met him and assured him that the common admission platform will be ready to use in the 2021 academic year,” he said in an interview with online news portal, abcnews.

He continued, “the Vice Chancellors paid a courtesy call on the President and the President stated emphatically that he as a president and his government has nothing to do with stifling academic freedom. In fact, this draft bill is the first bill in this country to try and define what we mean by academic freedom using examples of how other nations have developed it. If it has to be improved, we are hoping for that but the government will not and must not and does not intend in any way to stifle academic freedom.”

credit: myxyzonline.com

Publish on Apt

Do you have any Social, informational, educational or entertaining stuff that should be featured on www.aptnewsghana.com?

Please submit your stories, pictures, and videos to us via WhatsApp: +233548388489 or click on the icon on your screen. Alternatively, email us: aptnewsghana@gmail.com

RSS APO Group – Africa-Newsroom: latest news releases related to Africa

  • African Union to Launch the African Single Electricity Market (AfSEM) December 2, 2020
    Download logoAs the Second Ordinary Session of the Sub-Committee on Energy of the African Union Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism (STC-TTIIET) take its second day, African Energy Ministers gathered to discuss the implementation status of the Action Plan adopted by the STC-TTIIET held in April 2019 in Cairo, […]
  • Communiqué on H.E. Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union Commission's two day working visit to the Republic of South Africa December 2, 2020
    Download logoThe Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, concluded a two day working visit to the Republic of South Africa today. The Chairperson was received by President Cyril Ramaphosa, and current Chair of the African Union, where the two leaders held extensive consultations on a wide range of issues. During their meeting, […]
  • Coronavirus - Malawi: COVID-19 Daily Information Update (1st December 2020) December 2, 2020
    New cases: 0 Total confirmed cases: 6028 Total active cases: 34 Total recovered: 5465 (10 New) Lost to follow-up: 102 Outcome under investigation: 242 Total number of tests conducted: 74032 (22 New) Total Death: 185 (0 New) Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Ministry of Health and Population, Republic of Malawi.Media filesDownload logo
  • Rugby: The General Assembly of the Rwanda Rugby Federation (RRF) Elected New Conflict and Resolution Committee December 2, 2020
    The Rwanda Rugby Federation (RRF) (http://www.RwandaRugby.com/) members met in the General Assembly and elected Conflict and Resolution Committee to replace the one who have completed 5 years term. According to RRF Constitution the members re-elected Abizeyimana Thadee as President of the committee, Nsanzimana Ignace as Vice President and Ibemaso Ernestine as secretary. The RRF members […]
  • Lionesses Graduate from Isuzu East Africa (EA) Life Skills Program December 2, 2020
    Kenya Lionesses squad members graduated on Wednesday 2 December 2020 from the first phase of a two-year life skills training program supported by Isuzu East Africa’s CSR Program. Twenty nine members of the team went through a non-resident training program on development of business skills, entrepreneurship, sports professionals courses, technical skills training as well as […]
  • Ecobank Group wins Awards from EMEA Finance, The Banker and Global Finance December 2, 2020
    Leading pan-African banking group, Ecobank (https://www.Ecobank.com/), has won awards from EMEA Finance, The Banker and Global Finance. Ecobank’s awards in the EMEA Finance African Banking Awards 2020 includes the pan-African award for Financial Inclusion, and ‘Best Bank’ in Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Chad, Gabon, The Gambia, Guinea, Liberia and Mali. The Banker’s Bank of the […]
  • COVID-19 drives wages down, new International Labour Organization (ILO) report finds December 2, 2020
    Download logoA new report by the International Labour Organization (ILO) has found that monthly wages fell or grew more slowly in the first six months of 2020, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, in two-thirds of countries for which official data was available, and that the crisis is likely to inflict massive downward pressure […]
  • Coronavirus - South Africa: MEC Anroux Marais on suspension of summer initiation season due to Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic December 2, 2020
    Download logoWith the resurgence of positive COVID-19 cases in the province, Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais, officially confirms that the sacred practice of initiation has been suspended in the province until further notice as per the Cabinet decision taken yesterday, 1 December 2020.  As gazetted by the Department of Co-operative […]
  • Coronavirus - South Africa: COVID-19 statistics in South Africa (01 December 2020) December 2, 2020
    Positive cases identified: 792299 Total recoveries: 732531 Total deaths: 21644 New cases: 2295Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa, Department of Health.Media filesDownload logo
  • Brown, Tanfield and Vinjebo sign-on for Team Qhubeka ASSOS December 2, 2020
    Team Qhubeka ASSOS is excited to announce that Connor Brown, Harry Tanfield and Emil Vinjebo will all join our WorldTour team in 2021. Brown, who was born in Cape Town and holds dual South African and New Zealand citizenship, takes the step up from our hugely successful Continental team where he has spent the last […]
About Editor 606 Articles
Joe Bright Nyarko Journalist/Communication Researcher. Environment & Sustainability Advocate. Managing Editor of aptnewsghana.com, a non-profit news portal with bias towards environment and sustainability issues, rural development policies and gender & inequality.