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A presidential aspirant of the Graduate Students Association of Ghana at the University of Ghana (UG GRASAG), David Hudgson, has joined the discussion on the new bill that the government has introduced to Parliament for the purposes of regulating Public Universities in the country.
In a release he called for a review of the document so it can serve its intended purpose.
Read his full release below:
I humbly write as a stakeholder of education by virtue of me being a former student leader at the undergraduate and aspiring leader at the Graduate School. I have meticulously gone through the provisions in the new University Draft Bill which has become a subject of national discourse. The subsequent commentaries which have come from various stakeholders show how the Ghanaian people are very particular and very interested in issues of our educational sector.
One cannot ignore the effort made the government in ensuring that the country sees major reforms in our educational system. It is in this spirit that government formed a committee to draft the University Bill which has ignited a serious debate across our socio-political divide.
That notwithstanding I think government must open up for criticism and other proposals on the Bill to make it legitimate and more accepted by the various stakeholders.
As students, we feel undone by some section of the bill and it is with the highest humility we call for a review of CHAPTER 3 H of the provisions in the bill. This has to do with the composition of the university governing council and the representation of student leadership on the board. It must be noted that formerly, two representatives were on the governing board namely the president of the Student Representative Council (SRC) of the Undergraduate level and the President of the Graduate School student (GRASAG). However, the current bill on the table permit only one representation for both independent bodies. This we find very disturbing and has a recipe to course disaffection in the student front of both bodies. Both bodies are independent and different in the execution of duties and programmes. The academic and welfare needs of GRASAG and the SRC are very peculiar and distinct for both delicate bodies to be given one slot on the governing council.
We at the Graduate School will be disappointed if we are not well represented on the governing council. The Graduate School which is a higher learning ground deserve an independent slot and must be part of decision making and the day to day to running of the university. In terms of population, the Graduate School is the second largest stakeholder and it will be very strange if such a body is denied an independent slot on the governing council.
Nonetheless, the government must come clear on the entire ARTICLE 3 and this must be critically looked at to avoid the seeming discomfort which is fast raising eyebrows across the educational sector.
we wish to, therefore, plead with government through the Ministry of Education to consider the concerns raised on the governing council by civil society organizations, student leadership, academicians from all fields of endeavors, former Vice-Chancellors, and other retired educationalists. Their voices on this issue are not an opposition nor resistance to change but a clear statement to the government to reconsider it stands on the University Bill. These are the main stakeholders and their unhappiness about the bill must be respected and considered for further deliberation.
Since the government is a listening one, we at the Graduate School believe that government will come clear on the composition of the governing council and consequently give GRASAG its representation.
Yours in Student Service
UG GRASAG PRESIDENTIAL HOPEFUL.