General News of Thu, 25 Oct 201810
Vice Chancellor must go – KNUST Students
Students of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) have called for the removal of the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Kwasi Obiri-Danso, from office.
They also called for the removal of the Dean of Students, Professor Gariba Akanwariwiak, and head of security at the university, who they solely accused of causing Monday’s riot which resulted in the destruction of property running into several thousand Ghana cedis.
There have been calls in recent times for the Vice-Chancellor to resign his position or be removed for the recent violence that erupted on the campus of the university.
Many people, including the Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide Newspaper, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako, have made calls for Prof. Obiri-Danso to be removed from office for the chaos at KNUST.
Mr. Baako, who described the Vice-Chancellor as a “stubborn cat” during a programme on radio, wants him to exit for failing to find more creative ways of dealing with the issues raised by the students.
“The Vice-Chancellor and his governing board are ‘stubborn’ cats. I think that they should have held their fire and found more creative ways of dealing with the issues raised by the students. Indeed, deferment of the conversion of single sex halls into mixed ones could have helped and cooled down tempers. If I were him, with the way things are going on, I might exit. I would have exercised that discretion of resignation,” he stressed.
He continued: “The situation has gotten out of hand and the school has been closed down indefinitely. We need to grow a certain culture in this part of the world. People have resigned over such happenings. People take responsibility and resign because they hold a position of responsibility and not necessarily because they are blamable.
Some concerned students of the university insisted that if the grievances of the irate students are not addressed, they will embark on several protests until the relevant authorities remove the university’s “tyrant” managers.
Emmanuel Boakye-Yiadom, spokesperson for the Concerned Students of KNUST, said the student body is overwhelmingly in favour of the removal of the VC and the two management members of KNUST.
Addressing the media yesterday in Kumasi, Boakye-Yiadom indicated that the Vice-Chancellor ignored all concerns of students on the “vexatious’ conduct of the university’s security personnel and instead intimidated and penalized students in clear violation of their fundamental human rights.
“The university management was in full support of the brutalities and barbaric attacks on students. They had no interest whatsoever in protecting student lives,” he asserted.
Mr. Boakye-Yiadom said the VC should be removed for tacit endorsement of the violation of the rights of students by the university’s security personnel, waste of public funds on construction of walls, harassment of students, among others.
On Monday, angry students of the university embarked on demonstration which led to the destruction of property.
The official vehicle of the Dean of Students was burnt during the demonstration, while windows and windscreens of vehicles were damaged.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Education, Dr Mathew Opoku-Prempeh, and other officials of the Ministry visited the campus to assess the extent of damage to property after the university was shut down.
The relevant authorities are expected to take immediate action to restore the academic calendar of the university.