UTAG Initiate an Indefinite Strike
Members of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) will today embark on an indefinite nationwide strike to protest a court ruling which directed the Vice Chancellor of the University of Education, Winneba (UEW), to step aside temporarily.
The strike is in solidarity with the UTAG-UEW, whose members have already laid down their tools since July 2017.
UTAG views the court’s directive as an attack on academic freedom which it believes might affect all public universities in the country.
Justifying their decision, President of UTAG, Harry Agbanu said the protest is aimed at fighting the “menace of unwonted interference in University education.”
“The court in its pronouncement asked that the man should step aside until the governing council is formed so the governing council has the right to vary the decision of the court and this is the case that the governing council is not doing that and that same governing council has written to withdraw the case from the court so where do we go?”
A Winneba High Court in July ordered the Vice Chancellor of UEW, Professor Mawutor Avokeh, to step aside until a case brought against him and the University’s Governing Council is determined.
The order also affected the institution’s Finance Officer.
The order was made in a case brought before the court by Supi Kofi Kwayera who insisted that the Vice Chancellor and the Finance Officer were operating under the institution’s defunct governing council.
The plaintiff held that the University’s Council’s mandate had expired in November 2013, but the Education Ministry failed to constitute a new Governing Council for the university, and rather allowed and permitted the defunct Governing Council which had no mandate whatsoever to continue the functions of a properly constituted Governing Council as if same had been properly constituted.
This, Mr. Kwayera insisted was unlawful, and hence his legal action against the University of Education, Winneba.