Monday, January 31, 2011

KNUST bans party politics (LEAD STORY, NSEMPA, JAN 31, 2011)

By: Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi

POLITICAL party activities on the campus of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) have been banned.
The Vice Chancellor (VC) of the university, Prof. W.O Ellis, stated categorically that the university would not allow its campus to be used to advance the course of any political party.
“This is an academic institution and it should remain so,” the VC said at a media encounter he organised in Kumasi, last Thursday.
Answering a question posed by a journalist, Prof. Ellis said much as students have the right to join the political party of their choice, they could only organise political activities outside the campus.
He said the university had set out guidelines for political activities on campus and would not deviate from them.
The occasion enabled the VC to share his vision and aspirations with the media and also discuss ways of partnering the media to advance his vision for the KNUST.
Prof. Ellis, the youngest ever VC of the KNUST, has set out a journey to position the university as a global centre of excellence in science and technology education.
He noted the role of the media in advancing the development of education and said, “We are today opening a new chapter with the media and I am hopeful that the future will be positive.”
Prof. Ellis urged the media to crosscheck information about the university to avoid the publication of negative stories that could tarnish the university’s reputation.
The Vice Chancellor said in the competitive world of today, one single negative story could have adverse effects on the university’s reputation.
Notwithstanding, he noted that as a big institution with thousands of students, the university was bound to encounter disturbing events but stressed that what was important was how to manage them when they happened.
Prof. Ellis challenged managers of radio stations to endeavour to invite people with requisite knowledge and qualifications to discuss specific issues.
“It is irritating to hear all manner of people discussing issues they have no knowledge about.”
This, he noted, defeated the professional role of the media to inform, entertain and educate.
He maintained that KNUST was the best university in the country today, a situation that placed a responsibility on the administration to work at building on the standards achieved.
On the proposed opening of the Accra campus of the KNUST, Prof. Ellis said it was on course.

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