Storm In A Teacup
The rumpus over whether or not to curtail the powers of the University of Ghana, Legon, through Parliament in the area of restricting access within the campus, does not only sound puerile, but also mind boggling.
A triviality resolvable through a simple dialogue between the relevant personalities, many cynics have attributed Parliaments interest in the matter to idleness on the part of the honourable ladies and gentlemen.
It is a painful diversion of attention from critical national deficiencies by the people’s representatives: expectedly, it is resonating negatively across the country, leaving in its trail a blemish on the collective image of the MPs. Perhaps this is the time for those who are in opposition to stand up and be counted lest they are lumped with the others.
It is flippant when Parliament in the face of unprecedented challenges of curtailed megawatts of electricity supply, runaway corruption and failure to recover state funds wrongly and criminally paid to undeserving persons and an all-time depreciated national currency, would find time to discuss what can pass for an ordinary internal issue of a public university.
And to think that such a useless crusade is being championed by persons who recently passed through the hands of the very persons they seek to denigrate, is even more appalling.
We have observed the degeneration of the Legon debacle from the time the National Security Coordinator literally jumped onto the campus to demolish a toll booth, and now Parliament ready to go for the jugular.
The traffic jam caused by the location of the toll booth at the time could not have been overlooked by those with interest in the smooth flow of traffic; but considering the other options, decent and not crude, we were at a loss as to the choice of the brawny approach. More so when the Ghana Police Service Motor Traffic and Transport Unit and others could have managed the challenges posed by the traffic jam occasioned by the toll booth.
The path of dialoguing with the university authorities by government to iron out a simple matter has doubtlessly been dumped for abrasive rhetoric in a manner which leaves us with no choice but to sneer in disappointment.
The political and vindictive undertone the subject is assuming is alarming as the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has been remotely activated to jump into the fray. Posing administrative questions by the Office whose alignment is not in doubt, is further mocking our already stressed governance apparatus and exposing it to further public ridicule.
We are saddened that those behind it all are deliberately ignoring the effects of such cheap actions.
We do not know of any university whose campus serves as a thoroughfare for the convenience of all, commuters et al, to the peril of students and on-campus members of the academic community.
Perhaps we are on the verge of countenancing an era of government deciding on who graduates and who does not, and grading system as part of a grand design to reduce the academic freedom enjoyed by university authorities worldwide. Hmm!