KNUST lecturers declare indefinite strike over interim council

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Lecturers at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) have declared an indefinite strike effective Friday following recent happenings at the university.

According to the lecturers, they are displeased with government’s dissolution of the governing council and the subsequent inauguration of a seven-member interim council to run the affairs of the university for the next three months.

The lecturers have also expressed their dissatisfaction with the exclusion of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Kwasi Obiri Danso from the interim council and the inclusion of the President of the Student Representative Council (SRC), Kelvin Sah in the interim council.

Government on Thursday dissolved the Governing Council of the university and in its place constituted an interim council following events that led to a violent demonstration by students and subsequent closure of the university.

The interim council has been mandated to oversee the day-to-day running of the school and ensure that the school is reopened within 14 days to enable academic work to continue.

But the lecturers say they do not recognise the council and will not work with its members when school is reopened.

On Thursday, the National President of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG), Dr Eric Opoku Mensah said they were not consulted and do not have a representation on the interim council.

He said UTAG sees the dissolution of the council as a “smokescreen” aimed at removing Prof Kwasi Obiri-Danso as Vice Chancellor and described the action by government as “most disappointing.”

“We are appalled; we are surprised at what is happening. If the government decides that it is going to set up an Interim Management Committee and decides to put the SRC President there but forgets about other major stakeholders and the vice-chancellor himself, this is surprising.

“We saw this coming and we know what the government wants to do with respect to the future of the vice-chancellor. UTAG is a major stakeholder in education in universities in Ghana and we are not going to sit down for this thing to happen,” he said.

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