The Minister of Education, Hon. Dr. Osei Yaw Adutwum is reported to be racing against time in what appears to be a clandestine move to appoint Rev. Prof. Harold Steward Amonoo-Kuofi as the Chairperson of the Governing Council of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) against the advice of many important stakeholders.
The last-minute move has come up strongly because the Minister is alleged to have been badly bruised with the decision of the just ended University of Cape Coast Council to honour some of Adutwum’s internal political opponents, a decision he did not take kindly to and moved heaven and earth to stop it but was not successful. Prof. Amonoo-Kuofi is seen to be a Machiavellian tactician who will do the bidding of Adutwum and hence his clandestine moves to appoint him even though sources close to Jubilee House suggests that a different name was submitted for approval. The decision to appoint Rev Prof. Harold Steward Amonoo-Kuofi would portend doom for the University of Cape Coast. Here are the Reasons why Rev Prof. Harold Steward Amonoo-Kuofi should not be appointed as the Chairman of UCC Governing Council.
1. Historical Precedent: The tradition of appointing Chairpersons of Governing Councils for Ghanaian public universities, especially UCC, has avoided former university staff. This tradition exists to prevent potential biases, prejudices, or conflicts of interest from affecting decision-making. This is because, someone with previous university ties is likely to have past grievances and resentments that would not auger well for sound judgements and exercise of discretion. Citing an example at the University of Education, Winneba (UEW) where a former staff member when appointed as the Chair led to internal turmoil and controversies. It is believed that the Chair of UEW while in active service had issues with other members of staff and therefore sought to use his privileged position as Chair to settle scores, including the removal of Vice Chancellor and other staff. Rev. Prof. Amonoo-Kuofi served as the Provost of the College of Health and Allied Sciences of the University of Cape Coast prior to his retirement. His tenure as Provost, saw a lot of victimization against non-medical practitioners in the College and he took very ridiculous decisions some of which were challenged and the consequences still linger on till date. Indeed, some are still being litigated. He was a dictator and a bully. Obviously, his past records and tiers with the University of Cape Coast put him in a high conflict of interest position and this will not auger well for UCC which has been stable over the past three decades and seen consistent development and growth becoming the No 1 University in Ghana and West Africa.
*2. Exit from UCC: Prof* . Amonoo-Kuofi’s departure from UCC was not under the best circumstances and it is another reason why he is in a high conflict of interest position. His resignation was occasioned by the denial of his post-retirement contract renewal at the College of Health and Allied Sciences because he was overaged and had under stated it. When this matter came to the fore due to available past records which he probably thought were concealed in the public domain, he did not pursue the renewal of the contract and resigned bitterly. This was followed with a number of allegations from him that he was being haunted out of the University. This departure certainly suggests lingering grievances or dissatisfaction, which could lead to personal schemas rather than providing impartial leadership if appointed as the Chair of the Governing Council.
3. Allegations and Petitions at CCTU: Prof. Amonoo-Kuofi faces allegations of non-performance, divisiveness, dictatorial behavior, and extravagant spending as the Chairman of the Governing Council at Cape Coast Technical University (CCTU). There have been press releases, petitions, and calls for his removal by some staff and alumni, citing concerns about his leadership style and financial decisions. As Council Chair of CCTU, Prof Amonoo Kuofi had several issues with his former Vice Chancellor who exited under bizarre circumstances and some of his benefits denied due to the personal feud he had with the former Vice Chancellor. If the Minister of Education is considering acting on these petitions at CCTU, it is suggested that such a controversial figure should not be appointed to UCC, especially when the university has been experiencing peace and development for a long time now. In any case, one wonders why Hon. Dr Adutwum will consider bringing such a man to the University of Cape Coast when he is still serving his second term as the Chairman of Council at CCTU.
These potential biases, past grievances, and controversies surrounding Prof. Amonoo-Kuofi’s leadership will impair his ability to provide impartial and effective guidance as the Chair of UCC’s Governing Council. There are indications that there are some big hands behind the Minister to appoint Prof. Amonoo Kuofi to perpetuate an agenda of the Minister and some other power brokers which will obviously plunge UCC into chaos. Already, some lecturers are gearing up to speak if this move by the Hon. Minister of Education is not halted. It is hoped that the NPP government will learn lessons from what happened at UEW and not cause confusion in UCC. Insiders suggest a grand scheme that has been hatched by the Minister and we are following up on this.
More details will follow soon.