Empower board to close down unaccredited universities — Council

The Council of Independent Universities (CIU) has suggested to the government to give the National Accreditation Board (NAB) the mandate to close down unaccredited private tertiary institutions in the country.

According to the CIU, the springing up of private universities without licenses in recent times is worrying, saying that the situation is having a negative impact on the operations of private universities in the country.

The Chairman of the CIU, Prof. Kwesi Yankah, who was speaking in Accra during the 8th anniversary of the council, said some of the private tertiary institutions usually ran programmes which did not merit accreditation but deceived students in that regard, adding, “Unaccredited private universities in the country are giving the accredited ones a bad name, and that is worrying,” he said.

  Misconceptions about private universities 
Prof. Yankah, who is also the President of the Central University College, corrected some misconceptions about private universities.

While admitting that fees in the private universities were relatively high, he noted that current trends in the public universities pointed to a gradual narrowing of the gap.

“This started in the mid-1990s when the flow of money from government to public universities started slowing down due to budgetary constraints.

The situation compelled the institution of academic facility user fees and residential facility user fees as an innovative way of balancing the annual budget,” Prof. Yankah added.

  Theme of celebration
Speaking on the theme, “Public Private Partnership in Tertiary Education,” the CIU Representative on NAB, Prof. Kwame Boasiako Omane-Antwi, said there was the need for private tertiary educational institutions to partner with sister universities across the globe to share knowledge and ideas.

“PPP have been heavily promoted in key sectors such as education and health care with the aim of improving efficiency and innovation in the generation and performance of public services.

“All of us in the higher education ecosystem have something to contribute to the overall landscape, and our continued success will depend on our ability to work together across both public and private institutions to achieve great results for our students and society as a whole,” Prof. Omane-Antwi said.

  Minister of Education
The Minister of Education, Prof. Naana Jane Opoku Agyemang, said private universities were bedevilled with a lot of challenges such as funding, affiliation, as well as accreditation, noting that there was the need for a dialogue between the agencies in education and the private universities to forge the way forward.

She condemned tertiary institutions that operated in the country without accreditation, and added, “No country should condone unapproved accreditation.”

  National dialogue 
The Education Minister hinted that a national dialogue had been put in place to discuss the relationship between academia and industry, and charged all members of the public to make it a priority to attend.

She stated that the discussion would revolve around the areas of production of quality graduates to meet the standards that the industries required, while the industries would also be made to bring out ideas that would help shape the kind of graduates they needed.

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