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Tue, Jul

Consider KNUST’s request to recruit staff to accelerate growth— Asantehene

Otumfuo Osei Tutu

The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has appealed to the government to, as a matter of urgency, consider a request by the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) to recruit staff.

That to him would enable KNUST to improve on its teacher-student ratio and the administrative and supporting staff of the university.

The Asantehene, who is also the Chancellor of KNUST, is reliably informed that management of the university has made a request to the government for permission to recruit staff.

However, before declaring the 51st Congregation of KNUST duly constituted last Saturday in Kumasi, the King noted that the staffing situation of the university was worrying and that the government's permission to the university to recruit more staff was crucial to the quality training of needed manpower to stimulate development and growth of the country.

"The primary mandate of this institution is to train the needed manpower required to stimulate development and growth of the country. Paradoxically, the university itself does not have the full complement of staff.

“The teacher-to-student ratio is far [higher than0 what is required for effective teaching and learning and the situation is not different with the administrative and supporting staff of the university," his royal majesty stated.

"I would like to use this opportunity to appeal to the government to consider, as a matter of urgency, the request of the university to prevent a situation where improperly trained graduates would be produced for the job market to the detriment of society," he stressed.

Parliament should review law on IGF

He noted that KNUST was grappling with how to fund its core mandate of teaching, research and community service.

This, to him, had been as a result of insufficient and irregular subvention from the government.

He further noted that universities could not rely on internally-generated funds to remedy the situation because of a new law passed by Parliament which required that universities must remit 34 per cent of their internally generated funds to the government.

He thus asked Parliament to reconsider and review the new law to support a more sustainable funding regime for universities in the country.

Healthcare needs

The Asantehene noted that one of the serious problems facing the country was how to adequately and effectively provide for the health needs of citizens.

On that score, to beef up infrastructure and personnel required for quality health care, KNUST was intensifying efforts to train more medical doctors and other healthcare professionals for the country.

Education Ministry at forefront

In a speech read on his behalf, the Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, stated that the ministry was at the forefront of education issues.

He said the National Council for Tertiary Education (NTCE) Act, Act 457, 1999 was under review and commended the Asantehene and KNUST for their efforts, commitment and service to the growth of higher education institutions.

He indicated that the government was increasing the loan quota for students at universities to enhance education at that level.

He hinted that payment of books and research allowance covering an amount of GH¢55 million would soon begin.