The Students’ Representative Council (SRC) of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) has said that the students will not be bullied by the management of the university into paying utility bills.
The Government had directed public universities and polytechnics to pay their own utilities bills, forcing the management of some Universities to redirect the costs to the students.There were suggestions that the removal of the utility subsidies by the government and the directive to the Universities to pay, was only a front to force the bills on students.
However, this was denied by the Deputy Minister of Education in-charge of tertiary, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwah, who stated at the time that, government was yet to take a decision on the matter.
The President of the SRC at UCC, Dennis Appiah Larbi-Ampofo, stated that the University is only trying to pass some of its debts to students as utility bills.
“We thought and believed that issue had died out until recently when the university management called on us. There was a revelation that the University is still owing huge sums of debt and the Electricity Company of Ghana is also on the neck of the University to pay,” he said.
Mr. Larbi-Ampofo also revealed that a meeting with the government had strengthened their stance on the matter and that they were waiting for official communication from the government forcing the University to pay the bills.
“There was a stakeholders meeting with the government and all the stakeholders including students and our position remains unchanged. We are still waiting for an official communique from government to tell all University management that we shouldn’t pay,” he said
The leader of the UCC students, who had earlier threatened to hit the streets over the utility costs, told Citi News that the students were not willing to pay the extra utility costs because they did not have the resources to afford them.
“Education of Ghanaians is a right not a privilege. It’s not as if the money is there and we don’t want to pay. The money is not there so we can’t pay,” he said.
By: Edwin Kwakofi/citifmonline.com/Ghana