The Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Sulemana Braimah, says Management of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) must review the sanctions announced in respect of the 'Conti-Katanga clash'.
According to him, the current sanctions 'are not the way to go'; adding that they will only affect the holistic development of students.
Sharing his thoughts on the newspaper review segment of JoyNews' AM Show on Monday, Mr. Braimah explained that even though the University must maintain order, such disciplinary actions should not stifle the development of students.
He noted that the ban on student elections and gatherings will only kill leadership initiative of students and make them timid.
He therefore urged authorities to rather deal with the root cause of such clashes.
"Certainly, that's not the way to go. I don't think that our university authorities should begin to adopt measures that are intended to bring up timid students. Leadership is important and one way by which students can learn the phenomenon of leadership is their participation in the management of halls.
To say that JCRs shouldn't be part of hall management is really untenable. How do you say students at the university level cannot be part of managing the affairs of the hall?", Mr. Braimah quizzed.
Mr. Braimah added, "JCRs are so critical in the management of halls; we should look at the root cause of the issues. I don't think that the problem is their participation in JCR activities.
I don't think it is the question of whether they get to be involved in what they call morale sessions or not. It is the whole issue of the moral decadence in our society".
The comments by the MFWA boss follow a directive by the Management of the University barring students from participating in 'morale' sessions, hall week activities and SRC Week Celebrations.
In a statement dated August 26, the University said "all Hall Week and SRC Week Celebrations have been SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY. Any student who participates in the organisation of ‘morale’ and/or ‘procession’ shall be SUMMARILY DISMISSED".
The directives follow a recent clash between residents of the University Hall (Katanga) and their counterparts in Unity Hall (Continental).
The riot, which was said to have resulted from attempts by students of Unity Hall to restrain colleagues from University Hall from using their frontage during a procession, took place on August 18, 2022.
A number of cars parked in front of Conti hall were damaged by the feuding students. The clash left three vehicles damaged.
But Mr. Braimah believes that in as much as order must be maintained, the current sanctions will rather undermine the growth of students in other areas of socialisation and leadership.
Underscoring the essence of student leadership, he said he and the likes of Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Sammy Awuku were all active student leaders back in the day, and that has contributed to their present endeavours.
Meanwhile, some students at the University are protesting the sanctions of the University, describing it as harsh and unfair. This includes the students parliament of the school.
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