Some concerned citizens of the Upper West Region have expressed worry about what they say is the deliberate attempt by the Vice Chancellor and some staff of the University for Development Studies (UDS) to supervise the collapse of the Wa Campus of the university.
They said since the issue of granting the Wa Campus an autonomy gained attention of the executive arm of government in 2012, some authorities of the university had been against making it autonomous.
Addressing a news conference at Wa in the Upper West Region, the co-convener of a group, calling itself concerned citizens of the Upper West Region and sympathizers of UDS Wa campus, Mr. Ishaque Suleman indicated that the central administration of UDS had taken calculated steps to weaken the Wa Campus to deny it the quest to achieve autonomy.
“From 2012 till today, UDS Central Administration has taken steps to weaken the Wa campus, so that, the quest to achieve autonomy will ultimately fail,” he stated.
He lamented that there had been a drastic reduction in the number of students graduating from the Wa campus, from 4612 in 2014 to 2413 in 2017, which represented about 50 per cent.
According to Mr. Suleman, the Principal of the Wa Campus of the university, Professor Amin Alhassan, granted an interview to a local radio station in the region and said the Wa campus of the university had seen a drastic decline in students enrollment over the years due to factors including: “insecurity on campus, lack of infrastructure on the Wa campus, and introduction of six technical universities” among others.
Mr. Suleman noted that as part of the plot by Professor Alhassan and the “grand scheme” titled “Realignment and Rationalization of academic staff” committee to cripple the Wa Campus of the UDS, some critical faculties were been moved out of the Wa campus to other campuses.
Some of these faculties included: Faculty of Arts – Department of Communication Studies and Innovation, Department of Journalism and Media Studies, Department of Public Relations and Advertising, and Department of Library and Information Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences – Department of Sociology and Social Work, Department of Geography, Department of Political Science, Department of Economics, and Center for Regional Integration among others.
Mr. Suleman explained that the group would not give up and would explore every available means including peaceful demonstrations to ensure that the plot to collapse the Wa campus of the UDS did not materialize.
“We will not give up the fight but will proceed boldly against the UDS authorities by organizing demonstrations frequently until they listen, locking up lecture halls and offices in Wa campus, petitioning the president of the Republic of Ghana for the autonomy of Wa campus with particular reference to Dr. Christene Amoaku-Nuamah’s 10 member committee report, fighting these issues in court,” he added.
Mr. Suleman commended some stakeholders in the region and beyond including the former Ambassador to Burkina Faso, Ambassador Sahanun Moqtari for ensuring that the region gained a campus in 2002, and the Regional House of Chiefs for supporting fight to make the Wa campus autonomous.
Meanwhile, during his visit to the Upper West Region in June this year, the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo, assured the chiefs and people of the region of his resolve to granting the Wa campus of the UDS autonomy.