Asantehene to assess damage on KNUST campus today

General News of Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Source: citinewsroom.com

2018-10-31

Otumfuo Osei Tutu II

The Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, is expected to pay a visit to the school today [Wednesday].

The Asantehene’s visit will be to assess the extent of damage done following violent student protests last week.

Rampaging students destroyed over 40 staff cars and vandalised school properties.

The extent of the damage is yet to be determined.

The Asantehene has already stepped in to have lecturers at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) call off their strike in protest of the dissolution school’s governing council.

The government asked the Asantehene to take steps to reconstitute a new Governing Council in accordance with the institution’s relevant statutes and laws.

The new council is expected to be constituted on Friday along with the reinstatement of the Vice Chancellor, Professor Kwasi Obiri Danso, who asked to step aside on Monday.

The government constituted an interim University council after it closed down KNUST over a violent student protest.

It gave the council a 3-month tenure to work towards addressing the impasse between students and the university management, while making sure the University reopens before November 8, 2018.

There has been opposition to the developments as members of the Senior Staff Association, the Ghana Association of University Administrators (GAUA), the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG), and the Teachers and Education Workers Union (TEWU) staged a demonstration against the dissolution of the University’s Governing Council.

Background

The arrest of 10 students and one alumnus of the school compelled the Students’ Representative Council (SRC) to mobilise for the Monday protest.

The students were arrested for a holding vigil on campus last Friday without permission, according to the school authorities.

One other student who was allegedly mistreated by the internal security was hospitalised at the KNUST hospital.

The Executive Council of the SRC said the demonstration was needed to convey students’ frustration over disrespect and oppression by the school.

The arrests came after the KNUST management served notice that it had suspended the organisation of vigils (morales) in the school.

The management said this was because of “several negative issues encountered recently concerning morales in the hall.”

Some of the protesters called for the removal of the Vice-Chancellor.

The SRC said the actions of the campus security and the police officers were a “gross deviation” because the two agencies were instead to protect them.

The Council also promised students that it would ensure the security officers who allegedly beat up students are held accountable while urging students to remain calm.

The Police arrested 20 students following the incident.

A day later, the school was closed down indefinitely.

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