Professor Gabriel A Teye, Vice Chancellor of the University for Development Studies (UDS), has stated that the creation of autonomous universities out of the UDS would help to collapse the university.
For some time now traditional rulers in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions as well as other stakeholders in education have been calling for the conversion of the UDS Campuses in Nyankpala, Navrongo and Wa campuses into separate universities but Professor Teye sharing his opinion on the issues saw it differently.
He said what was important for the people in the three regions of the North, was to advocate the establishment of new universities in addition to the UDS but not to create autonomous universities out of UDS campuses.
Addressing the third UDS Alumni Association National Delegates Congress in Wa, Vice Chancellor Professor Teye said the UDS was surviving on the numerical strength of its students since government’s subvention was no more forthcoming.
He said the module which the UDS had used to create campuses in the regions was now being duplicated nationally and internationally by other universities worldwide and that should serve as “food for thought” for stakeholders in education in the regions.
“The three regions of the North need new universities and not a piece of UDS. Having new universities will be more helpful than advocating the autonomy of the various campuses of the university”, he suggested.
However, Professor Daniel A Bagah, also of the UDS who gave documentatary evidence leading to the conversion of campuses into autonomous universities, said: “as an insider making the campuses fully-fledged universities is a down deal”.
He described the debate about the creating or not creating universities out of the campuses as “academic rationality as against political convenience”.
According to him, any contrary opinion would be subjected to political brushes, saying: “Political convenience is dominant”.
Professor Bagah who was the guest speaker, said the UDS would not die but would continue to exist if its campuses were converted into separate universities.
“Reflecting on UDS issues seriously, the autonomy of the UDS campuses as universities is a down deal”, he pointed.
Dr. Felix K. Abagale, UDS Alumni President, said the Association has assisted UDS in various forms including the extension of electricity to campuses, providing support for the establishment of clinics and contributing to the UDS policies to improve the image of the University.
He appealed to members of the association not be bystanders but be serious alumni helping to build the image of the University to provide quality academic performance and contributing its quota to national development.
“Let us be part of the University and participate actively on issues of the University to make it one of the best in Ghana and the world”.
Dr. Abagale urged authorities of the University to improve lecture halls, accommodation facilities, sanitation, general security and Information Communication and Technology among others in the University.