Some former and current students of the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana have thrown their weight behind Prof. Ransford Gyampo, Head of the Centre for European Studies at the University, in the “Sex for Grade” scandal that hit the country some weeks ago.
Prof. Gyampo was captured in a documentary put together by the BBC Africa Eye. The 53 minutes documentary which had about 10 minutes focused on Prof. Gyampo, according to the BBC, was supposed to have revealed “Sex for Grades” in some West African Universities. However, the job by the BBC has been described by many including the revered Ghanaian professor of communication, Prof. Kwasi Ansu-Kyeremeh, as a ‘journalistic investigation gone rogue.’
Declaring their support, the students in a statement, jointly released with the #IStandWithGyampo Movement, described the documentary as “bogus and of no basis” saying “the video fails to establish any case of extortion, solicitation, abuse of power, intimidation or coercion.”
The BBC in an interview with Ghanaweb had stated that they only filmed Prof. Gyampo and one other lecturer, Dr. Paul Butakor, because the two were their “target”. The students believe the professor was targeted to be silenced by the BBC, because of his power and influence in the Ghanaian political scene.
The BBC’s admission that Prof. Gyampo was their ‘target’, according to the students, feeds into a sinister agenda to run down an enviable reputation without course or purpose.
Professor Gyampo, described as “a dedicated lecturer” by his students, is a philanthropist who believes in community of service. This is manifested in his works in the Central Region, where he hails from and other places.
He has contributed immensely to Ghana’s electoral politics and political architecture, serving through NGOs and CSOs including the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), one of the nation’s respected entities on electoral matters. He is an outspoken academic whose views on important national issues are well documented, both in the media and academic papers he has published.
The students in their statement indicated their awareness of the University’s Sexual Harassment Policy and how ‘hard it bites even students’ acknowledging that grades at the University of Ghana are to be awarded based on merit and not through any form of pleasantries including sex. “We frown on any act of solicitation on the part of lecturers or students,” they indicated.
They however emphasized that the BBC video, only showed footage of two consenting adults exchanging gestures of intimacy.
Meanwhile, Prof. Gyampo and Dr. Butakor have both been interdicted by the University while investigation is currently ongoing.
SONA2020: Teachers to be granted professional allowance – Prez. Akuffo Addo
In the educational aspect of President Akuffo Addo’s State Of the Nation’s Address (SONA), he addressed that, “all plans, all hopes, all expectations for a brighter tomorrow will only come to fruition if they can guarantee an educated and skilled workforce”. He also expressed on how education has been their priority pinpointing to the national budget as a reference to his speculation.
“Mr. Speaker, A look at the national budget gives a clear indication of where our priority lies and it is with education”.
In respect to the chalk and board fraternity, thus the teaching fraternity, the address highlighted on the restoration of teacher trainee allowances. It again highlighted some achievements chalked in the teaching fraternity which are; employment of sixty-seven thousand (67,000) teachers, tier-2 pension funds of teachers have been paid, the three-year backlog of non-promotion of teachers have been cleared. “We have abandoned the three-month pay policy inherited for newly-recruited teachers and cleared 92% of the legacy arrears”. His address stated.
The address again went on to say that the research and book allowances that were cancelled have been restored and his government have agreed to grant teachers a professional allowance.
“We want the teachers to accept that they hold our destinies in their hands”.
UDS NAVRONGO CAMPUS PUTTING ON A NEW FACE- INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENTS MANIFESTING
On Tuesday 14th of January, 2020, the SRC president took upon his WhatsApp status expressing his joy on the ongoing renovation and the “massive infrastructure development”.
His excellency the SRC president Raymond Oviti is nationwide known for his fight for the school fees reduction. This was mainly because, the intended purpose of some slashes in the school fees were not realized.
Through series of dialogue and displeasure of students through demonstration, the administration came into terms with the leadership of the SRC.
The SRC Public relations officer, Mr Ishmael told the student populace through a circular stating that, the administration asked for a little time to improve upon the infrastructures and other pressing issues of concern.
KING WORDI BUSINESS CENTRE has opened a new shop just beside kokotu. They have in stock various soft drinks and bottled water.
True to their words, the administration has started with and ongoing developments as they have promised. Among the ongoing renovation include the NH1 lecture halls and completion of the school library.
The SRC president is hopeful that, the developments as they have promised, will be completed before the end of the second trimester as the auditorium, FAS block and others are in line.
Private Varsities Want Autonomy
The Private Universities Students Association of Ghana (PUSAG) has called on government to make private universities autonomous.
At the handover ceremony of the newly elected executives of PUSAG, which was under the theme: “Academic Freedom: Ensuring the Autonomous and Effective Running of Private Universities,” the Minister of State for Tertiary Education, Professor Kwesi Yankah, gave an assurance that the autonomy issue was being looked at by Parliament.
He said government was determined to take measures to rule out the outmoded affiliation system.
He indicated that government was making plans to remove all barriers that limit the ability of private tertiary institutions to become more effective and also put the private institutions on the same status as the public universities. “The new policy introduces measures that seek to make the private universities autonomous,” he affirmed.
Later in an interview, Prof. Yankson added that the new policy would award licence to private universities after three years of operation, depending on the number of years the university has been in existence and the facilities they have to operate with if they become autonomous.
“Licence will be awarded to private universities that can operate on their own in terms of facilities and professionalism of lecturers,” he said. The Chief Executive Officer of Joy for Fame, John Obiri Yeboah, who was a guest speaker, said the existence of private tertiary institution had helped in the development of the country and promised to support PUSAG to become effective.
The past National President of PUSAG, Charles Opoku, mentioned that private universities cannot continue to have their ‘competitors’ as their ‘masters’ and called on government to provide a five-year road map to give autonomy to private universities. He used the opportunity to outline some of the successes of his administration.
The newly elected President of PUSAG, Alswel Annan, called on management of private universities to admit more students.
Nana Dr. Appiagyei Dankawoso I, who chaired the function, advised the newly elected executives to stay focused and not dabble in unnecessary partisan politics.
“Don’t let any politician to use you; never be moved by what you see and hear but by the spirit,” he advised.