The Parliament of Ghana Tuesday, December 15, 2020, approved the much-touted and controversial Public Universities Bill after its second reading.
The Bill which was opposed by the teacher unions and minority caucus in parliament but has currently been approved will give the government the authority to appoint the majority of members of the University Council.
Former President John Mahama for instance said the “Bill, as it stands, does not only risk undermining academic innovation and ingenuity but will also jettison decades of scholarly excellence and adversely affect Ghana’s position as the preferred destination for international scholarly collaboration”
Ghana’s Education Minister, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh popularly known as NAPO commenting on the Public Universities Bill noted concerns from all relevant stakeholders in the education sector was considered.
“There is been a thorough consultation between us [Government] and the stakeholders which even necessitated the relaying of the same due to the voluminous nature of their inputs compelled us to withdraw and relay the same. So, it is not about consultation because Parliament in its own way did advertise it for inputs.”
Per the Public Universities Bill, the central government will have the power to appoint the majority of members of the University Council.
It will also give President Nana Akufo-Addo the authority 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.