The Spokesperson of the John Mahama Campaign Team, James Agyenim Boateng, says the violence that ensued at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is an “underlying frustration” of Ghanaians caused by the government.
In a statement issued on Monday’s destruction of property by demonstrating students, Mr Agyenim Boateng noted that it is a reflection of the “intolerance” and “impunity” that have characterized the Akufo-Addo-led government.
“The events at KNUST show a deeper underlying frustration of the pent-up feelings of not just students but also the larger Ghanaian public,” he stated.
“It is a reflection of the intolerance and impunity that have characterised governance under the present administration. Again, the general hardship unleashed by the policies of the Akufo-Addo government continues to build resentment among many sections of Ghanaians.”
He cited the recent hikes in petroleum prices, job losses, and the general hardship as having “all brought about economic pressure on parents and guardians as well as students”.
The statement predicted that other agitated groups may take a cue from the students’ action if government does not implement measures to “help alleviate the suffering that families are facing so that labour and other key stakeholder groups”.
On the specific issue at KNUST, Mr Agyenin Boateng asked for deep engagements between the student leaders and authorities for “a speedy resolution of the issues and a quick return to normalcy on the campus”.
Akufo-Addo’s stony silence
The campaign team of John Mahama chided the president, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, for his “stony silence” on happenings at the university.
“For a President who has been quick to comment on seemingly irrelevant and innocuous happenings in the country and beyond, it is telling that he has kept a deafening silence on this serious matter.”
The team was also concerned about the lack of foresight on the part of the Minister of Education in charge of Tertiary Education for taking no action when the signals of an implosion were clear.
“Instead of the minister in charge of tertiary education moderating the then-looming tensions, he hailed as a bold step the very issues that the students were unhappy about.
“A timely response from the government would have averted Monday’s unfortunate incident.”