UDS Urges Kufuor to Redeem Gh¢25m Pledge
2008-12-15 23:23:06This article has been read 686 times.The Acting Vice Chancellor of the University for Development Studies (UDS), Professor Kaku Sagary Nokoe, has passionately appealed to President John Agyekum Kufuor to release the GH¢25 million Seed Money he promised the University some four years ago to help tackle the numerous financial and infrastructural challenges facing the University before he leaves office next month.
According to the Vice Chancellor, the University authorities had continued to follow on the promise and awaited its disbursement to meet the demands of the UDS but to no avail. Prof Nokoe was speaking at the 9th Congregation of the UDS in Tamale on Saturday.
He enumerated some of the grave challenges facing the four campuses of the University (namely the Wa, Navrongo, Nyankpala and Tamale campuses) which include inadequate lecture halls, teaching facilities, hostels for clinical students at the Tamale Teaching Hospital, staff accommodation and family-bonding facilities such as basic schools on campuses among others. Others are means of transportation for students and lecturers, libraries, health centres and access roads on all the campuses.
The University for Development Studies is the only Institution of higher learning in Ghana which runs a Community-Technical Interface programme, a unique combination of the academic and community based field practical work called the Third Trimester Field Practical Programme (TTFPP), that covers a trimester in each academic year for three consecutive years, cutting across all faculties in its integrated approach and ensures that students live and work closely in communities to formulate specific interventions to address definite challenges.
Nevertheless, the Vice Chancellor believes that the present government under the Chairmanship of President Kufuor has supported and transformed the UDS through GETfund and other sources. The University, in spite of the financial and infrastructural constraints still continues to produce highly qualified professionals each year, with practical ability to perform and survive on the job market.
Prof Nokoe also appealed to Estate Developers to consider putting up affordable hostels in and around the campuses of the University to accommodate the over 10,000 students and staff population of 1,027.
He disclosed that the University in this academic year admitted 76 students to its Master of Science, Arts and Philosophy programmes, while for the first time in the history of the University, a major academic landmark was achieved through the admission of five candidates to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programme, with four in the Mathematical Sciences and one in Development Management. In all, the UDS in this 2007/2008 academic year, successfully graduated 1,270 representing 30% more than last year figure of 972, of whom 28% were women.
Out of the number, 61 got diploma passes including one distinction, 11 First Class Honours (4 in Agric Technology, 7 in the Applied Sciences and none from the Integrated Development Studies), 386 Second Class Upper Honours, 804 Second Class Lower Honours, and 9 Third Class Honours. Three of the first batch of candidates who had enrolled for the Master of Philosophy in Development Studies four years ago also graduated.
On the other hand, President John Agyekum Kufuor, in a speech read on his behalf by the Northern Regional Minister, Alhaji Mustapha Ali Idris, reacted to the delay in the release of the seed money he promised the UDS. The President stated categorically that his promise to the University still holds and promised to be part of the total transformation of the University.
According to him, he was gradually fulfilling his promise to the UDS without publicity and that was why majority of Ghanaians were unaware of what the NPP government had been doing for the university.
President Kufuor also said that the development of the UDS Medical School in Tamale was central to his government's plans to develop the Northern Sector of Ghana. He therefore indicated that the National Council for Tertiary Education had drawn his attention to the special recruitment needs of the UDS to meet accreditation and had directed the Ministry of Finance to offer the support.
He declared that the UDS shall be supported to become a University of choice and the natural destination of all prospective applicants already domiciled in the north. Meanwhile, one of the graduands, Ms Alhassan Latifa Abubakar, the only 1st Class student in Applied Chemistry told The Chronicle that her outstanding academic success was achieved through hard work, commitment to studies and discipline. She, therefore, advised all Ghanaian students to be responsive to lectures and cut off bad companies in order to achieve their desired results.