As part of its students centeredness policy to combat the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, the management of the University of Education, Winneba (UEW) has drafted student leaders from all levels into its university-wide COVID-19 task force.
The task force, which is made up of university management, Deans, Directors, Heads of Departments, all security personnel and student leaders from all levels, is mandated to ensure strict compliance with the safety protocols outlined to control the spread of the coronavirus among staff and students.
The student leaders will be empowered to serve as ambassadors together with the management to ensure strict adherence with the COVID-19 protocols as a way of keeping the university community safe for all categories of staff and students.
At a brief ceremony to launch the initiative at the Jophus Anamuah-Mensah Conference Centre, the Vice Chancellor of the UEW, Rev. Fr Prof. Anthony Afful-Broni, said the move was to enable the university management to accommodate the concerns of students in the management of the pandemic on campus.
He noted that the fight against the pandemic, which had wreaked havoc across the world, was herculean which required an all hands on deck approach in the management of the pandemic in the university to protect the lives of users of the university.
“The involvement of the students in combating the pandemic on campus is the most effective way towards ensuring that the students follow through all the safety measures spelt out to stop the further spread of the virus,” he said.
He said student leaders were being called upon to be part of the decision-making process, implementers and ambassadors of the safety protocols so as to ensure that preventive measures were adhered by their colleagues.
The Vice Chancellor said “As a public university, we are under strict obligation to follow through laid down directives to control the spread of the virus to prevent loss of lives of staff and students or the closure of the university and consequent disruption of the academic calendar.”
He noted that the task could not be executed alone by the management and the staff and that all stakeholders must come on board to ensure that all the preventive protocols were complied with for the safety of all.
He added that “we want to raise awareness of the COVID-19 safety protocols to a new level and we believe that the responsibility was on everyone to adhere to it that there will not be the situation that students would be forced to go home due to disregard for the protocols.
He further warned that the management of the university would not hesitate to trigger the appropriate processes to be meted out to students found disregarding the safety protocols in so far as it would keep the university safe to carry out its mandate.
As part of this initiative, class representatives will be supplied with sanitisers and thermometer guns in addition to existing structures to ensure that students follow the safety protocols in lecture hall settings.
All student leaders would also be wearing special task force tags and empowered with the needed logistics to enable them to advocate and ensure the enforcement of the COVID-19 safety protocols.