Management of the University of Ghana has reiterated that it is not keen on the option of privatizing some four halls of residence.
They have said that they are still looking at other possible ways to bring closure to the matter without having to resort to the option of pegging the cost of residing in those halls at commercial rates.
Earlier this year, there was a scare among residents at the four halls that the halls were going to managed by private firms following management’s failure to pay back a 43million Ghana cedis loan it secured from a consortium of banks in 2008.
The loan was used in the construction of the Hilla Limann Hall, Alexander Kwapong Hall, Elizabeth Frances Sey Hall and the Jean Nelson hall.
The loan which was released in three tranches has grown to ¢528m due to interests and other charges which have accrued over the past 10 years.
Subsequently, management held a meeting with the Education Ministry where the Minister of State in charge of tertiary education, Prof. Kwasi Yankah, promised of government’s intervention in the matter.
Little, has since been heard from University Management concerning further developments on the matter.
But speaking to UniversNews, University of Ghana Dean of Students, Prof. Godfred Bopkin, said that University authorities are committed to preventing a full privatisation of the halls.
With the issue of privatization, the University is not keen on that now. We are looking at alternative ways to manage the situation without it having to take a pure privatization form, Prof. Bokpin said
Prof. Godfred Bokpin added that the University Council will have a stakeholders meeting this week to discuss proposals and come out with a favourable solution on the issue.
“Council will be meeting this week and after that there will be some form of engagement, especially with the students body because they are key stakeholders before any decision will be made,” he added.
Prior to UniversNews’ engagement with the Dean, the Students Representative Council of the University, demanded from management a detailed financial statement and forensic audit on the payments residents of the halls have made since establishment of the halls.
The UGSRC president, Isaac Agyemang, in a proposition letter also demanded that the School Management serve his office with due documentation on the payment plan to service the loans contracted for the construction of the four halls.
“To begin with, the Students’ Representative council requests for a detailed financial statement and forensic audit on the previous payment made by students of the University and the subsequent application of such funds over the years on the establishment of the four new halls; Dr. Hilla Limann, Alexander Adum Kwapong , Elizabeth Frances Sey and Jean Nelson Aka halls”
“In addition to the above, the Students’ Representative Council request to be given due documentation on the payment plan to service the loans contracted for the construction of the four halls”
“Again, the students’ Representative Council proposes for a stakeholder discussion to finalize deliberations on the residential fees”, he further appealed.
Story by: Dorcas Clement & Jeffrey Nyabor|universnewsroom.com