General Regional

Conti/Katanga alumni battle KNUST VC

The alumni of the University and Unity halls of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) are on head on collusion with the management of the university over the conversion of the halls into mixed halls.

According to the group, authorities of the institution are employing autocratic and intimidating means to force them to give up on the legal battle against the decision of the conversion of the halls.

Pictures of some students who have been brutalised by the University security personnel on campus were shown as evidence to the fact that school authorities are battling the students through intimidation, in order to force them to give up the fight.

According to them, the action is intended to stop students from following the old tradition of the former male halls that has been preserved through the ages.

Addressing a news conference in Accra, Charles Dontoh, President of the University hall Alumni outlined the negative effects of the decision on the image of the halls and on resident students as well, describing the decision as unacceptable.

He added that, the decision by the school’s authority risks opening resident students up to vices such as increased sexual exploitation, in-house fighting and to some extent raping of female students on campus, risking lowering the discipline and moral standard of the halls.

University authorities explained that the decision of the conversion was rather intended to help prevent students from such vices as described above, an action which has received mixed reaction from stakeholders.

He asserted that the Alumni would not succumb to the threats and intimidation of the authorities to back down.

Charles Dontoh asserted that the solution rather lies with the school’s management having broader stake holder consultations, especially with the Alumni and aimed at finding a lasting solution to the impasse, instead of the “autocratic” and unilateral measures being taken by them.

They added that: “This is because not all students prefer a mixed hall”, he said.

The groupadded that “no university in the world has implemented such an ‘awkward decision’ of converting separate sex halls into mixed halls”, adding that it is rather destroying the long held tradition of the halls, hence should be abolished.

Mr. Dontoh stated that the hall executives have been denied accommodation on campus, only for them to be promised that they would be back on campus if they withdraw the case at the court.

The group has, therefore, called on school authorities to rescind their decision with immediate effect, asserting that they will not yield to any forceful measures.

They warned that school authorities are rather worsening the case, indicating that the views and interests of the students must be paramount, adding that as long as they reside in these halls, their traditions must go on.

The Alumni, however, declined to disclose their next line of action to The Chronicle, should the case at the Court fail to go their way.

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