UEW Closure Registrar must be hauled before court for contempt - Lawyer

The University was on Tuesday closed down temporarily following a court case brought against it by a former Assemblyman of Donkoryiem, Supi Kofi Kwayera over the continuous stay of the school’s Council.

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The Registrar of the University of Education ought to be hauled before the court for contempt of court, legal practitioner Egbert Faibille has said.

According to him, the Registrar has no authority to communicate a close down of the University “when the court injunction only restrained the VC and Council from continuing to discharge their duties pending the determination of the substantive case,” adding that the court injunction did not order a closure of the University.

play Egbert Faibille

 

What happened?

The University was on Tuesday closed down temporarily following a court case brought against it by a former Assemblyman of Donkoryiem, Supi Kofi Kwayera over the continuous stay of the school’s Council.

The Council’s mandatory four year term expired in 2013. However, the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government ordered the Council to act until a substantive one is appointed.

 

The Education Minister at the time, Professor Naana Opoku Agyemang said that the protracted election petition in 2013 and some challenges facing the education sector were to be blamed for the extension.

READ ALSO: The University of Education closure was not ordered by court- Afenyo Markin

But the businessman was not happy with the development. He subsequently filed a suit at a Winneba High Court demanding that all decisions taken by the Council to be declared null and void.

The Assemblyman is also seeking the declaration that the extension of the mandate of the Governing Council by the University and Education Ministry was in breach of Section 8 of Act 972.

At a hearing at Winneba, the presiding judge, Justice Ato Graves Mills ruled that the reliefs sought by the plaintiff should be upheld pending the determination of the case on Friday 16th June, 2017.

He also asked for the current Vice Chancellor of the school and other senior members to be restrained from exercising their duties.

A press release subsequently signed by the registrar of the university on Tuesday 13th June said: “In line with the decision of the court, the members of the university community, comprising University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) executives, Deans, Heads of Departments and representatives of Senior Members, have, therefore, decided to shut down the university until Friday 16th June, 2017 when the substantive case will be heard.”

The statement added: “In order not to flout the directive of the court, the registrar has been directed by the university at a meeting held today, 13th June, 2017, to communicate the closure of all campuses of the university (Winneba, Kumasi, Mampong-Ashanti, and Ajumako).”

But Lawyer Faibille has questioned the basis upon which the Registrar communicated the closure of the University.

play Egbert Faibille

 

He wrote on his Facebook Timeline that “All appointments by the VC and Council are still valid until set aside. In any event, what has a Lecturer teaching a course got to do with whether a Council or VC are at post!”

He believed that “the Registrar's conduct is clearly to set the public against the Court!”

Students unhappy

The injunction has affected over 46,000 students in all the four satellite campuses of the university located in Kumasi, Mampong, Winneba, and Ajumako.

Many who are expected to graduate this year are worried about the development and have vowed to petition the government to intervene to ensure that their graduation is held.

Meanwhile, the University of Education has asked the students to exercise restraint as the injunction ordering the closure is temporary and will expire on Friday.

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