The University of Ghana branch of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UG-UTAG) has been caught in deceitful agenda bordering on the suspended Public University Bill, 2020.
The UG-UTAG, which has been at the forefront in moves to thwart the Bill, which has been crafted to inure to the benefit of all public universities, has been caught circulating a fake document, claiming it is the revised edition of the Bill.
Interestingly, the document that the UG-UTAG is floating is starkly different from the one that has been worked on by the Attorney-General after all the necessary inputs had been done by stakeholders.
It is instructive to note that no revised document of the Public University Bill has been prepared by the Ministry of Education, and it is also worthy to note that the UG-UTAG does not have the authentic document because the one finalised by the Attorney-General’s Department is slated to become public today.
It was the fake document that the UG-UTAG managed put out to hoodwink everyone, including some government officials, into believing that the Bill was problematic.
It is emerging that the document that the Attorney-General worked on would have been made public today, a situation that has made claptrap of the whole move to withdraw the Bill from Parliament.
The fake document floated by the mischievous scholars was bereft of the fine details in the Bill that had been propped up by the Attorney-General’s Department.
As part of the grand scheme to block the Public University Bill 2020, some members of the UG-UTAG threatened to impeach the national executives of UTAG and managed to get the targeted national officers to go mum, and thus making them to be successful in their grimy agenda.
The fake UG-UTAG document is 46 pages, while the authentic document is 83 pages, with four additional pages that have been arranged in Roman numerals.
The document that is in circulation from the UG-UTAG does not have certain relevant portions in the authentic one which talks about a standardised status for public universities.
In the authentic document, statuses which touch on all aspects of public universities have been duly spelt out, something that the fake document lacks.
The document that was worked on by the Attorney-General’s Department talks about schedules on various appointments, the functions of various committees and convocation, but the fake document does not have these.
The UG-UTAG had in the past engaged the National UTAG in tussles all in their agenda to truncate the passage of the Public University Bill.
The last-minute tactic adopted by the UG-UTAG was their threat to impeach the National President of UTAG, something that has forced those at the national level to be silent on the fact that the members of UG-UTAG were circulating fake document.
The UTAG offered its support to the Public University Bill 2020 with inputs on how to fine-tune the whole idea.
The UTAG submitted a memorandum to Parliament for the consideration of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education on how the passage of the Bill will, to a larger extent, harmonise the governance, administration and accountability structures of public universities in the country.
The position of UTAG was to help ensure that the Bill would achieve its stated aim, and it took into consideration the best practices, as captured in the existing Acts and Statuses, and inputs from the 10 branches of the association before arriving at the memorandum that was sent to Parliament.
In that 25-page document, UTAG made a number of proposed revisions that would help in making the Bill better for the public universities.
UTAG carefully went through the whole Bill, unlike certain individuals criticizing the Bill, before making inputs in a memorandum.
The Public Universities Bill seeks to harmonize the finances, administration and governance structure of public universities in Ghana.
The Public Universities Bill when passed will give the Government of Ghana the power to appoint the majority of members of the University Council.
The University Council will then have the power to appoint and dismiss public university officials.
The Public Universities Bill will give the president the power to dissolve the University Council which will now have the power to appoint a chancellor.
The University Council will be able to control the finances of the university and determine the allocation of funds.
In addition to this, there will be a proposal to rename four public universities after various personalities.