Desist from it or face my wrath – Asantehene warns against encroachment of KNUST lands

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Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has warned encroachers of the university land to stay off or face his wrath.

He says any chief who allocates part of the KNUST land will have themselves to blame.

The Asantehene dared anybody claiming to own a part of the university land to head to court, adding he will face the court to state his authority over the lands.

“There’s no family land in Ashanti. No ‘abusuapanin’ can claim that the land belongs to him, and therefore he has the right to alienate a portion of the university land.

“You can go to any court, take it there. But, I’m sure also there will be a judge who will know that the constitution of Ashanti says, there’s no family land in Ashanti.

“And therefore get the lawyers to take you to court and I will get them to also turn over their decisions to affirm my authorities on the lands,” he said.

Speaking at the launch of the 70th Anniversary celebrations of the university, the Asantehene indicated the benefits the university bring are bigger than what any individual will earn from selling the land.

Otumfour therefore advised the citizenry not to consider the excess land capacity as waste since it would serve a purpose in the coming years.

“If not for nothing at all, let’s appreciate the foresight of our forepersons in seeing the vision through the lens of science and technology.

“When our fathers gave these vast lands, the university had only 200 students. Seventy years on, the university boasts of over 80,000 students.

“I dare say that 100 years on, the number of students will double or even triple, and every piece of land on this campus will be needed.

“Let no one perceive any unused land of the university today as waste,” he stated.

He is therefore cautioning chiefs fond of selling the university land to desist from the act.

“I condemn it in no uncertain terms and strongly send a note of caution to all those involved in it to desist from it or face my wrath.

“Let me warn the communities, the chiefs and whoever, the lands are mine, you’re just caretakers to those lands,” he said.

He also affirmed his support to the development of the university.

“On December 15, 2001 at the Special Congregation to confer an honorary of Doctorate degree on me as well as at my investiture on March 25, 2006 as the Chancellor of this university, I pledged my uttermost support to the development of this university.

“So therefore, it will not be under my watch as Asantehene and Chancellor of this university, that acts of encroachment on the lands of the university will go on,” he added.

The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Mrs. Rita Akosua Dickson commended the government for the staff recruitment clearance.

She however emphasized that it is inadequate.

“Currently, the average student to teacher ratio stands at 1 to 63 for regular learners. This ratio soared to a new high of 1 is to 76 when we add our distance learners.

“This ratio is in sharp contrast to the requirement of the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission,” she said.

She added: “Looking at the current STR, we can only ask for more.

Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Adutwum hinted at the government’s plans to whip up the interest of STEM education among Ghanaian students by establishing STEM-focused schools.

“This is the only opportunity we have to put poverty at bay and to ensure that together we transform our nation.

“Next academic year, we’re opening about ten schools that are focused on science, engineering and mathematics. We want them to capture the content of what is taught in the first year of engineering programs in such a way that by the time they get here they’re taking advanced classes and you’re moving them on,” he said.

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