FULL TEXT: The controversial Public Universities Bill

FULL TEXT: The controversial Public Universities Bill

The government through the Ministry of Education, has released the draft of the controversial Public Universities Bill, 2019. The purpose of the Pu

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The government through the Ministry of Education, has released the draft of the controversial Public Universities Bill, 2019.

The purpose of the Public Universities Bill, according to the Education Ministry, “is to provide the procedure for the establishment of Public Universities, principles of management of Public universities, the legal status of Public universities, the procedure for financing Public universities and administration and supervision of the activities of Public universities and related matters.”

Since the introduction of the bill which is still at the consultation stage, there have been oppositions from some professors at the universities and key stakeholders with the excuse that the government seeks to control academic freedom.

Political Science Lecturer at the University of Ghana, Professor Ransford Yaw Gyampo has vowed to resist any attempt to deny public universities the academic freedom they deserve through the bill he described as “bogus”.

Former Deputy Minister of Education, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has also said the Bill, if passed into law could become “a crude attack on the sacred principles of academic freedom”.

He, therefore, advised government to “withdraw and abandon this repulsive and contemptuous policy. This cannot be a sound policy path for a Democrat.”

Read the full text of the Bill below

PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES BILL, 2019

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

The right to higher education, subject to availability of resources, is a constitutional right to be observed by government. The purpose of the Public Universities Bill is to provide the procedure for the establishment of Public Universities, principles of management of Public universities, the legal status of Public universities, the procedure for financing Public universities and administration and supervision of the activities of Public universities and related matters.

Clauses 1 to 4 deal with the establishment of Public Universities in Ghana. A  Public University is established as a corporate entity under clause 1 with the aim of providing higher education, disseminating knowledge, undertaking research and fostering relationships with bodies  outside the University in accordance with principles specified under clause 2.  Clause 3 provides for the establishment of campuses whilst Clause 4 provides for the duty of the University to award degrees.

Clauses 5 to 12 deal with the governance of a Public University in Ghana. Clause 5 provides for a University Council as the governing body of a Public University. A Council shall consist of nine persons including a chairperson nominated by the President.

Clause 6 grants the Council general powers to do or provide for any matter in relation to the University that the Council considers expedient.

The functions of a Public University Council, as provided for under clause 7, include the duty to ensure the implementation of the aims of the University, to determine the strategic direction of the University, to monitor and evaluate the implementation of policies of the University and to promote income-generating activities as part of the programmes of the University. The Council is also required to control the finances of the University and determine the allocation and proper use of funds. The standard provisions on the tenure of office of members of the Council and meetings of the Council are set out in clause 8 and 9 respectively.

For the purposes of achieving the aims of the Public University, clause 10 emphasis on disclosure of interest thus a member of the Council who has an interest in a matter for consideration by the Council shall disclose in writing the nature of that interest and is qualified from participating in the deliberations of the Council in respect of that matter.

Clause 11 mandates the Council to establish standing or ad-hoc committees and assign to the committee’s functions that the Council considers appropriate. Clause 12 provides for the determination by the Minister in consultation with the Minister responsible for Finance, the allowances of members of the Council and committees of the Council.

The administration of the Public University is dealt with under clauses 13 to 25. The Principal Officers of the University are the Chancellor, the chairperson of the Council and the Vice-Chancellor, clause 13.  Clause 14 provides for the appointment and duties of the Chancellor by the Council. Clause 15 provides for vacancy in the Office of the Chancellor and further provides that the grounds and procedures for the removal of the Chancellor from office must be in accordance with the Statutes of the Public University. Clauses 16 to 17and 18 provide for the offices of the Vice-Chancellor and Pro Vice-Chancellor respectively.

The Academic Board which is established by clause 19 is answerable to the Council. The members of the Board include the Vice-Chancellor, the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Deans and Vice Deans and Directors of Schools, Institutes and Centres of the University, clause 20. Clause 21 mandates the Academic Board to establish standing and ad hoc committees for purposes of carrying out the functions of the Board which are provided for by clause 22.

The Council is required by clause 23 to appoint a Registrar of the Public University who shall hold office on the terms and conditions specified in the letter of appointment in accordance with the Statutes of the University.  The Director of Finance who is to be appointed under clause 24 is responsible to the Vice-Chancellor in the performance of the functions of the Director of Finance. The Council is mandated by clause 25 to appoint other staff as may be necessary for the effective performance of the functions of the University. The Council may make arrangements as the Council considers appropriate for the internal organisation of the University, under clause 25

Clause 26 provides for annual estimates for public universities. It further provides that a public university shall prepare and submit its annual estimates of revenue and expenditure through the National Council for Tertiary Education to the Minister of Finance for approval in such form and at such times as the Minister shall prescribe.

Clause 27 emphasize on funds of a public university. It further explains that the money received by or standing to the credit of an establishment of the university. The funds can also be used as an investment to the university that are not required or needed for immediate use as the council considers appropriate.

Internal Audit Unit is dealt with by clause 2 in line with the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921). Accounts and audits and annual report and other reports are dealt with by clauses 28 and 29 respectively

The Council shall within one month after receipt of the audit report, submit to the Minister, an annual report covering the activities and the operations of the University for the year to which the report relates. The report shall include any other information that may be required by the Minister in conformity with the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) or that may be relevant to enhance transparency and accountability under clause 31

Clause 31 exempts the Public University from the payment of taxes, duties and other charges that the Minister of Finance may in writing determine with the prior approval of Parliament.

Clauses 32 to 48 deal with miscellaneous matters. Clause 32 requires the Council to enact Statutes for the implementation of the Bill. Clause 33 requires the Council to have a Convocation of the Public University with the membership prescribed by the Statutes of the University. A student who is admitted to the University is obliged to take the Matriculation Oath and sign the Matriculation register, clause 34. The University is mandated by clause 35 to hold a Congregation composed of persons prescribed by the Council in the Statutes of the University.

Clause 36  and 37 provides for the Students’ Representative Council with the responsibility to represent students duly admitted and registered to study at the University.

Public universities are to operate in harmonised Statutes of which a draft of the Statutes shall be compiled by the National Council for Tertiary Education and circulated to members of the Council of each Public University, at least fourteen days before the date of the meeting at which the Statutes are to be considered under clause 38.

Clause 39 in consultation with NAB, the minister can make regulation to convert a qualified Polytechnic to Technical University as well as provision for the requirements needed.

Clause 40 empowers the University to acquire and hold moveable and immoveable property, sell, lease, and mortgage or otherwise alienate or dispose of that property or enter into any transaction.

Clause 41 emphasises on the academic freedoms of a Public university. Thus a Public university have the right and responsibility to preserve and promote the traditional principles of academic freedom in the conduct of its internal and external affairs.

 

The Minister may from time to time give policy directives through the National Council for Tertiary Education to the University and the University shall comply. This policy directive is provided for under clause 42.

Clause 43 makes room for anti-discrimination in the public university environment The University or an office of the University is prohibited  from discriminating against a person on the basis of the race, ethnic origin, political opinion, colour, gender, occupation, religion or creed, disability, social or economic status of that person.

Clause 44 makes provision for the instrument of governance. Clause 45 is about dispute settlement which considers an Appeals Board to hear and determine appeal matters specified in the Bill..  Clause 46 provides for the interpretation of words and phrases in the Bill. 47 provides for repeals and savings while Clause 48 provides for transitional provisions.

 

HON. DR. MATTHEW OPOKU PREMPEH (MP)

                                                                                   

 

Date:                          2019

 

PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES BILL, 2018

 

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

Establishment of a University

  1. Establishment of a Public University
  2. Aim of a Public University
  3. Campuses of a Public University
  4. Award of degrees

Governance of a University

  1. Public University Council
  2. General powers of the Council
  3. Functions of the council
  4. Tenure of office of members of the council
  5. Meeting of the council
  6. Disclosure of interest
  7. Establishment of committees
  8. Allowances

                                            Administration of a University

  1. Principal officers of a public university
  2. Chancellor of a public University
  3. Vacancy in the Office of the Chancellor
  4. Vice-Chancellor of the University
  5. Appointment of a vice chancellor of a public university
  6. Pro Vice-Chancellor of the University
  7. Academic Board
  8. Composition of the Academic Board
  9. Committees of the Academic Board
  10. Functions of the Academic Board
  11. The Registrar
  12. Director of Finance
  13. Appointment of other staff

Internal organisation of the UniversityFinancial Matters

  1. Annual estimates for public university
  2. Funds of the University
  3. Internal Audit Unit
  4. Accounts and audit
  5. Annual report and other reports
  6. Exemption from taxes, duties and other charges

Miscellaneous Matters

  1. Statutes of the University
  2. Convocation
  3. Matriculation
  4. Congregation
  5. Centralised admissions platform
  6. Student governance
  7. Procedure for enacting statutes for public universities
  8. Regulations
  9. Property and contracts
  10. Academic freedom
  11. Policy directive
  12. Anti-discrimination
  13. Instrument of governance
  14. Dispute settlement
  15. Interpretation
  16. Repeals and savings
  17. Transitional provisions

 

FIRST SCHEDULE PART A
Oath of Office

 

FIRST SCHEDULE PART B

      Oath of Secrecy

 SECOND SCHEDULE

List of Universities in Ghana

 

THIRD SCHDULE

List of Universities named after notable persons

 A

BILL

ENTITLED

 

PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES BILL, 2018

 

AN ACT to provide for the establishment, governance arrangements and management of Public Universities in Ghana and to provide for related matters.

PASSED by Parliament and assented to by the President:

 

Establishment of a Public University

Establishment of a Public University

1(1)     A Public University shall be a body corporate with perpetual succession, established by this Act or in accordance with the Technical Universities Act, 2016 (Act 922) or its Amendment.

(2)       For the performance of its functions, a Public University may acquire and hold

movable and immovable property, dispose of property and enter into any contract or other transaction that relates to the aims of the Public University.

(3)       Where there is a hindrance to the acquisition of immovable property, the

immovable property may be acquired for the Public University under the State Lands Acts, 1962 (Act 125) and the costs shall be borne by the University.

(4)       The Universities specified in the Second Schedule to this Act are existing

established Public Universities in Ghana.

(5)       All Public Universities and any subsequent Public University established after

coming into force of this Act shall be governed by this Act.

(6)       All Universities shall satisfy the requirements, regulations and Policy directives set out by the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission

 

Aims of a Public University

  1. The aim of a Public University is to provide higher education, disseminate knowledge, undertake research and foster relationships with bodies outside the University in accordance with the following principles:

 

(a)       higher education, subject to the availability of resources, shall be made equally accessible to all persons suitably qualified and capable to benefit from that education;

(b)       in determining the subjects to be taught, special attention shall be given

to courses of special relevance to the needs and aspirations of the country as a whole;

(c)        critical tools shall be used that include information and communication             technology for teaching, research, dissemination of knowledge and    administration;

(d)       foster the capacity for independent critical thinking among its students;

(e)       promote gender balance, social equity and equality of opportunity among students and employees

(f)         institute curricula and pedagogy within the context of learner-centred

and    problem-based learning techniques that are practical and relevant to national needs and aspirations

(g)       education, training and retraining higher level professional, technical

and management personnel;
(i)         use of teaching methods which promote critical and independent        thinking for the benefit of humanity;

advancement of knowledge through teaching, scholarly research and scientific investigation

(j)         disseminate the results of research through the publication of books,                                      papers and other suitable means; and

(k)        undertake research in  academic disciplines which are within the

mandate of the University.

In the discharge of its functions and the exercise of its powers

under this Act, a university shall be guided by the national values and principles of governance set out under Article 38 of the Constitution, and shall in that regard—

 

  • promote quality and relevance of its programmes;

 

  • enhance equity and accessibility of its services;

 

  • promote inclusive, efficient, effective and transparent governance systems and practices and maintenance of public trust;
  • ensure sustainability and adoption of best practices in management and institutionalization of systems of checks and balances;
  • promote private-public partnership in university education and development; and
  • institutionalize non-discriminatory practices.

 

Campuses of a Public University

  1. (a) A Public University may establish such campuses as may be

determined by the Council in accordance with section 25.

(b) the government may grant a public institution or facility to become part of a

Public University

Award of Degrees

  1.  (1)      A Public University shall, in accordance with section 14(7), award its own degrees including honorary degrees, diplomas and certificates.
    (2)      A Public University may withdraw a degree, diploma or certificate that a University has awarded, if a University has evidence that proves that:
  • the degree, diploma or certificate was obtained through fraud or academic malpractice; or
  • the process of acquiring the degree, diploma or certificate was tainted by an act that in the opinion of the University undermines the integrity of the award.

 

Governance of the University

The University Council

  1. (1)       The governing body of a Public University is a Council which shall consist of

the following nine members appointed by the President including:

(a) a chairperson nominated by the President;

(b)     the Vice-Chancellor;

(c)        four persons nominated by the President, one of whom shall be

a woman;

(d)       one representative of the registered Unions in the university on rotational basis

(e)       one representative of the University convocation elected by the

convocation;

(h)       one representative of the students of the University, nominated by the

Students’ Union; and

(j)         one representative from the National Council for Tertiary Education who shall be a non-voting member.

(2)       The President shall, in making the nominations, under paragraphs (a) and

(c) of sub-section (1), have regard to the academic qualifications, leadership qualities, gender, expertise in finance, management, knowledge and relevant experience in the area and specialisation of the University.

(3)       The chairperson and other members of the Council shall be appointed by the

President in accordance with article 70 of the Constitution.

(4)       The chairperson of the Council shall, in the absence of the Chancellor,

preside at the Congregation and other meetings and ceremonies of the

University.

(5)    the President may dissolve and reconstitute the council in cases of emergencies or appoint an interim council to operate for a stated period.

General Powers of the Council

  1. (1)       Subject to this and in consistent with public policy, the Council shall have

power to do or provide for any matter in relation to the University which the Council considers necessary or expedient or expedient

(2)       The conferment of particular powers on the Council by other provisions of

this Act, shall not be taken to limit the generality of this section.

Functions of the Council

  1.      The Council shall:

(a)       ensure the implementation of the aims of the University;

(b)       determine the strategic direction of the University;

  • monitor and evaluate the implementation of policies of the University;

(d)       promote income-generating activities as part of the programmes of the                      University;

(e)       control the finances of the University and determine the allocation and

proper use of funds;

(f)         ensure the conservation and augmentation of the resources of the

University, specifically in relation to matters affecting income or

expenditure;

(g)       ensure the creation of an environment of equal opportunity for                                                 members of the University without regard to ethnicity, gender, sex,

race, religious belief or political affiliation; and

(h)       make professorial level appointments on the recommendation of the

Appointment Committee of the Academic Board, as may be                                          prescribed in the Statutes of the University.

Tenure of office of members of the Council

  1. (1)       A member of the Council other than the Vice-Chancellor shall hold office for a term of three years and is eligible for re-appointment for another term only.

(2)        Where a member of the Council other than the Vice-Chancellor is absent

from three consecutive meetings without reasonable cause, the office of that     member shall become vacant.

(3)       A member of the Council, other than the Vice-Chancellor, may resign from

office in writing addressed to the President through the Minister.

(4)       Where the office of a member becomes vacant by death, resignation or the

absence of the member for three consecutive meetings without reasonable cause, another person nominated by the relevant body shall be appointed for the unexpired term of the office.

Meetings of the Council

  1.      (1)       The Council shall meet at least once every three months in each academic

year for the dispatch of business at the time and in the place determined by   the chairperson.

(2)       The quorum at a meeting of the Council is seven members of the Council.

(3)       The chairperson shall preside at each meeting of the Council and in the

absence of the chairperson, members of the Council shall elect one of the nominees of the President to preside.

(4)       Matters before the Council shall be decided by consensus or by a simple

majority of the members present and voting and in the event of an equality of votes, the person presiding shall have a casting vote.

(5)       The Council may co-opt a person to attend and participate in any of its

meetings but a co-opted person is not entitled to vote at a meeting.

(6)       The Pro Vice-Chancellor, the Registrar, and the Director of Finance shall

attend meetings of the Council,

(7)       The proceedings of the Council are not invalidated by reason of a vacancy

among the members or by a defect in the appointment or qualification of a

member.

(8)       Subject to this section, the Council may by Statute regulate its own

Procedure.

 

Disclosure of interest

  1.      (1)       A member of the Council who has an interest in a matter for consideration by

the Council shall disclose in writing the nature of that interest and is qualified from participating in the deliberations of the Council in respect of that matter.

(2)       Where a member contravenes subsection (1), the chairperson shall notify the

Minister who shall inform the President in writing to revoke the appointment   of that member. that member

(3)       Without limiting any further cause of action that may be instituted against the

member, the Council shall recover the benefit derived by a member who contravenes subsection (1) in addition to the revocation of the appointment of a member..

Establishment of committees

  1.        (1)       For the purpose of achieving the aim of the University, the Council may

establish standing or ad-hoc committees, made up of members or non- members of the Council and assign them functions that the Council considers appropriate.

(2)       A committee comprised entirely of non-members shall be advisory.

(3)       Section 9 applies to members of committee of the Council.

Allowances

  1. Members of the Council and members of a committee of the Council shall be paid

allowances approved by the Minister in consultation with the Minister responsible for Finance.

Administration of a Public University

Principal Officers of a Public University

  1. (1)       The Principal Officers of a Public University are:

(a)       The Chancellor;

(b)        Pro-Chancellor (Chairman of Council); and

(c)        The Vice-Chancellor

(2)       The Principal Officers of a Public University shall, before assuming office, take and subscribe to the oath of office as specified in the Schedule.

Chancellor of a Public University

  1. (1)       A Public University shall have a Chancellor.

(2)       The Council shall nominate three persons for consideration and appointment by the President

(3)       The Chancellor is the head of the University and the Chancellor takes

precedence over the other officers of the University.

(4)       The Chancellor shall hold office for a term of five years and is eligible for

re-appointment.

(5)       The Chancellor shall be served with the summons, minutes and other

documents related to meetings of the Council and may attend the meetings of the Council.

(6)       The Chancellor shall confer on qualified persons, degrees, diplomas and

certificates awarded by the University in accordance with this Act and procedures prescribed by the Council in the Statutes of the University.

(7)       The Chancellor may delegate functions under sub-section (7) by directions in

writing to the Council.

(9)       Where the integrity or well-being of the University is threatened by any matter,

the Chancellor may in consultation with the Council intervene.

Vacancy in the Office of the Chancellor

  1. (1)       The Office of the Chancellor shall become vacant on:

(a)      resignation;

(b)      death;

(c)      removal from office; or

(d)      the expiry of the term of office.

(2)       The grounds and procedures for the removal of the Chancellor from office

shall be specified in the Statutes of the Public University.

Vice-Chancellor of a University

  1. (1)       A University shall have a Vice-Chancellor.

(2)       The Council shall appoint the Vice-Chancellor for a Public University in accordance with procedures specified in the Statutes.

(3)       The Vice-Chancellor shall hold office on the terms and conditions specified

in the letter of appointment.

(4)       The Vice-Chancellor shall hold office for a term of three years and is eligible for re-appointment for another term only.

(5)       The Vice-Chancellor is the academic and administrative head and chief disciplinary officer of the Public University.

(6)       The Vice-Chancellor is responsible to the Council for maintaining order and ensuring the efficient administration of the University.

(7)       The Vice-Chancellor shall perform such other functions as may be prescribed by the Council in the Statutes of the Public University.

(8)       The Vice-Chancellor shall, before assuming office, take and subscribe to the Oath of Office and Oath of Secrecy as specified in the Schedule.

Appointment of a vice chancellor of a Public University

The University council shall appoint the Vice chancellor who is answerable to the Council and is the academic and administrative head and chief disciplinary officer of the University

Pro Vice-Chancellor (s) of a Public University

  1. (1)       A Public University shall have a Pro Vice-Chancellor (s).

(2)       The Council shall appoint the Pro Vice-Chancellor(s) of a Public University in accordance with the Statutes of the Public University.

(3)       The Pro-Vice Chancellor shall hold office for a term of three years and is

eligible for re-appointment for another term only.
(4)       The Pro Vice-Chancellor shall be in attendance at  meetings of the Council

(5)       The Pro Vice-Chancellor shall be assigned duties as the Council or the Vice-

Chancellor shall determine.

(6)       The Pro Vice-Chancellor shall perform the functions of the Vice- Chancellor in

the absence of the Vice-Chancellor.

(7)       The Pro Vice-Chancellor shall, before assuming office, take and subscribe to

the Oath of Office and Oath of Secretary as specified in the Schedule.

Academic Board

  1. There is established by this Act, an Academic Board of the University which is answerable to the Council.

Composition of the Academic Board

  1. (1) The Academic Board consists of:

(a)       the Vice-Chancellor who shall be the Chairperson;

(b)      the Pro Vice- Chancellor;

(c)        Deans and Vice-Deans;

(d)      Directors of Schools, Institutes and Centres;

(e)       Heads of Academic Departments;

(f)        Professors and Associate Professors;

(g)     A representative each of:

(i)         College;

(ii)        An Academic department;
(iii)       A School;
(iv)       An Institute; or
(v)        A Centre
(h)       The Librarian of the University;
(i)         The Registrar of the University; and
(j)         Nine other members of the University, five of whom are non-teaching

staff, elected by Convocation in accordance with the Statutes of the University.
(2)       A person who is an ex-officio member of the Academic Board may be represented at a meeting by a person designated by that member.

Committees of the Academic Board

  1. (1)       The Academic Board may establish standing and ad hoc committees for the

purpose of carrying out its functions under this Act and as may be   determined by the Statutes enacted by the Council.

(2)       A Committee of the Academic Board comprised entirely of non-members

shall be advisory only.

Functions of the Academic Board

  1. The Academic Board shall, subject to the powers of the Council,

(a)       formulate and implement the academic policies of the University;

(b)      devise and regulate courses of instruction;

(c)      regulate the

(i)         conduct of examinations; and

(ii)        award of degrees;

(d)      authorise the grants of funds for research;

(e)      advise the Council on the appointment of academic staff, admission of

students and the award of scholarships and bursaries;

(f)     report on matters that are referred to the Academic Board by the Council;

(g)      make representations to the Council on any matter connected with the

University; and

(h)       perform other functions in the Statutes of the University.

The Registrar

  1. (1)       A Public University shall have a Registrar.
  • The Council shall appoint the Registrar for the University.
  • The Registrar shall hold office on the terms and conditions specified in the

letter of appointment in accordance with the Statutes of the University.

  • The Registrar shall hold  office for a term of three years and is eligible for re-appointment for another term only.
  • The Registrar is the Secretary to the
    (a)       office of the Chancellor;(b)     Council; and(c)        Academic Board.(6)      The Registrar is responsible to the Vice-Chancellor for the day-to-day

administration of the affairs of the University.

(7)      The Registrar may perform any other functions provided for in the Statutes

of the University.

(8)       The Registrar is the secretary to the Council.

(8)       The Registrar shall, before assuming office, take and subscribe to the Oath

of Office as specified in the Schedule.

Director of Finance

  1. (1) A Public University shall have a Director of Finance.
  • The Council shall appoint the Director of Finance for the University.
  • The Director of Finance shall hold office for a term of three years and is eligible for re-appointment for another term only.
  • The Director of Finance shall perform functions as prescribed in the Statutes of the University.
  • The Director of Finance is responsible to the Vice-Chancellor in the performance of the functions of the Director of Finance.

Appointment of other staff

  1. The Council may appoint other staff as may be necessary for the effective performance

of the functions of the University.

Internal organisation of the University

  1. (1) Subject to this Act, the Council may make arrangements as the Council

considers appropriate for the internal organisation of the University,

including the:

(a)       establishment and variation  of academic Divisions,

Faculties, Schools, Centres, Institutes, Departments, , subject to consultation with the National Council for Tertiary Education;

(b)       award of professorships and promoting lecturers;

(c)      appointment and promotion of academic or administrative staff;

(d)       conferment of honorary degrees and other awards;

(e)     promotion of professional development; and

(f)      development of other facilities including hostels.

(2)       The University may:
(a)  enter into an agreement or relationship with another institution whether academic or non-academic within or outside the country in furtherance of the objectives for which it was established, subject to approval by the Minister for Education, in consultation with the National Council for Tertiary Education; and

(b)            incorporate within the University another institution or body, taking over the property, rights, privileges and liabilities of that other institution or body.

  • The Council shall exercise the powers referred to in subsection (1), only after consultation with the Academic Board on matters which in the opinion of the Council are academic matters.

Financial Matters

Annual Estimates for Public Universities

  1. (1) A public university shall prepare and submit its annual estimates of revenue and expenditure through the National Council for Tertiary Education to the Minister of Finance for approval in such form and at such times as the Minister shall prescribe

(2) A public university may incur expenditure for purposes of the institution in accordance with estimates approved by the Minister. Any approved estimates of expenditure may not be exceeded except with prior approval by the Minister

Funds of a Public University

  1. (1) The Funds of a Public University include

(a)                   moneys approved by Parliament;

(b)                   moneys accruing to the University in the performance of its functions including:

(i)         fees paid by students duly registered by the University;

(ii)        fees, charges and dues in respect of services rendered

by or through the University;

(iii)       proceeds from the sale of publications of the University;

(iv)       tuition and hostel fees; and

(v)        grants, subscriptions, rents and royalties;

(c)        returns on investments;
(d)       endowments, donations and gifts; and
(e)       moneys from any other source approved by the Council.

(2)       Any sum of money received by or on behalf of the University shall be paid into

a bank account of the University opened by or on the authority of the Council.

(3)       Moneys received by or standing to the credit of an establishment of the

University shall form part of the funds of the University as defined

under this Act.

(4)       The Council may invest the funds of the University that are not required for

immediate use as the Council considers appropriate.

Internal Audit Unit

  1. (1) The University shall have an Internal Audit Unit in accordance with section

83 of the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921).

(2)       The Internal Audit Unit shall be headed by an Internal Auditor who shall be

appointed in accordance with the Internal Audit Agency Act, 2003 (Act 658).

(3)       The Internal Auditor is responsible for the internal audit of the University.

(4)       The Internal Auditor shall, subject to subsections (3) and (4) of section 16 of

the Internal Audit Agency Act, 2003 (Act 658), at intervals of three months:

  • prepare and submit to the Council, a report on the internal audit

carried out during the period of three months immediately preceding the preparation of the report; and

  • make recommendations in each report with respect to matters which

appear to the Internal Auditor as necessary for the conduct of the affairs of the University.

  • The Internal Auditor shall, in accordance with subsection (4) of section 16 of

the Internal Audit Agency Act, 2003 (Act 658), submit a copy of each report prepared under this section to the Minister, through the National Council for Tertiary Education and the chairperson of the Board.

Accounts and audit

  1. (1)      The Council shall ensure that the University keeps books of account and

records in relation to the accounts in the form approved by the Auditor-General.

(2)       The Council shall submit the annual accounts of the University to the

Auditor-General for audit at the end of the financial year.
(3)       The accounts shall be under the signature of the Vice-Chancellor and

the Director of Finance.

(4)      The Auditor-General shall, within six months after the end of the immediately

preceding financial year, audit the accounts and forward a copy of the audit report to the Minister and the Council.

  • The financial year of the University is the same as the financial year of the Government.

Annual report and other reports

  1. (1) The Council shall within one month after receipt of the audit report, submit to the

Minister, through the National Council for Tertiary Education, an annual report covering the activities and the operations of the University for the year to which the report relates.

(2) The annual report shall include:

  • the report of the Auditor-General; and
  • any other information that may be required by the Minister in conformity with the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) or that may be relevant to enhance transparency and accountability.
  • The Minister shall, within one month after the receipt of the annual report from the National Council for Tertiary Education, submit the report to Parliament with a statement that the Minister considers necessary.
  • The Council shall also submit to the Minister any other reports which the Minister may require in writing.

Exemption from taxes, duties and other charges

  1. The University is exempt from the payment of taxes, duties and other charges that the Minister responsible for Finance may in writing determine with the prior approval of Parliament.

Miscellaneous Matters

Statutes of the University

  1. The Council shall by legislation enact Statutes for the implementation of this Act which shall, in particular,

(a)       regulate the following in respect of the employees of the University

(i)         appointment;
(iii)       termination of appointment; and

(b)      determine the persons who form the academic staff of the University;

(c)        determine the persons who are authorised to sign contracts, cheques and other documents on behalf of the University and to regulate the procedure in relation to transactions entered into by the University;

(d)       fix the academic calendar of the University;

(e)       determine the rules and procedures relating to discipline of students and employees of the University;

(f)         ensure that the seal of the University is kept under proper custody and is used only on the authority of the Council; and

(g)      provide for any matter required by this Act to be prescribed by Statute.

Convocation

  1. (1) There shall be a Convocation of the University with the membership

prescribed by the Statutes of the University.
(2)       The Registrar shall compile a register of the members of Convocation which shall be published each academic year.

(3)       The persons whose names appear on the register are entitled to vote at the

Convocation.

  • The Convocation shall meet at least once each academic year at the time

and place determined by the Vice-Chancellor.

  • Despite sub-section (4), the Convocation shall meet upon a request made by

a number of members as prescribed in the Statutes of the University.

(6)       The Convocation shall receive and discuss a report from the Vice-Chancellor on the state of the University and future plans for the University.

(7)       The Convocation may express an opinion on any matter that affects the University and may refer the matter to the Council or the Academic Board.

Matriculation

  1. (1) A student admitted to the University, shall take the Matriculation Oath

and sign the Matriculation Register.

(2)      A student who fails to sign the Matriculation Register shall be prevented by

the University from graduating.

Congregation

  1. The University may hold a Congregation composed of the persons prescribed by the Council in the Statutes of the University for the purpose of conferring degrees and awarding diplomas and certificates.
  2. Centralised Admissions Platform

There shall be a centralised Admission Platform of all the public Universities with the membership prescribed by the Council.

Student governance 

  1. (1) The University shall have a Students’ Representative Council.

(2)       The Students’ Representative Council is responsible for representing

students duly admitted and registered to study at the University.

(3)      The constitution and other governing instruments of the Students’           Representative Council shall:

(a)       be drawn up by the students subject to the approval of the

Academic Board; and

(b)       conform to this Act, the Statutes of the University and any other rules,                                                 regulations, directives and edicts duly issued by the University.

(4)       A constitution or a governing instrument, drawn up by the Students’ Representative Council which is inconsistent with paragraph (b) of subsection (3) shall, to the extent of the inconsistency, be void.

 

(5)       There may be specified in the Statutes of the University, appropriate bodies and organs of the University to which the Students’ Representative Council has representation.

Procedure for enacting Statutes for Public Universities

  1. (1) Public Universities established under this Act shall operate with harmonised

Statutes.

(2) To enact the harmonised Statutes under this Act, a draft of the Statutes shall be compiled by the National Council for Tertiary Education and circulated to members of the Council of each Public University, at least fourteen days before the date of the meeting at which the Statutes are to be considered.

(3) The Council of a Public University shall consider the draft Statutes and may approve the draft Statutes provisionally with or without amendment.

(4) The Statutes as provisionally approved, shall be circulated to the members of the Council and where in the opinion of the Council, the Statutes affects academic or other matters, the Statutes shall be circulated to

(a) the Academic Board; or

(b) other relevant body of the Public University at least seven days before the

meeting at which the draft Statutes, with or without amendments, are intended to be

confirmed.

  • Where the Council confirms any proposed amendment to the Statutes, the

Council shall forward the proposed amendments to the National Council for Tertiary Education for harmonisation.

  • The harmonised Statutes shall be confirmed by the Council at a meeting of the Council to be held not less than one month or not more than six months after the meeting at which the Statutes were previously approved.

(7) A Statute shall not be enacted if it is inconsistent with this Act.

  • A Public University established under this Act shall operate in accordance with the Scheme of Service approved by the National Council for Tertiary Education.

 

Regulations

  1. (1) The Minister may, on the advice of the National Council for Tertiary Education given in consultation with the National Accreditation Board, by legislative instrument, make Regulations

(2) A person in the employment of a Public University in existence immediately before the coming into force of this Act, shall, subject to the requirements of the harmonised Statutes and Scheme of Service for the Public Universities, be deemed to have been duly employed by the respective Public University established under this Act.

Property and contracts

  1. (1) Subject to approval by the Minister for Education, in consultation with the

National Council for Tertiary Education, a University may for
(a)       the purpose of the performance of the functions of the University, or

(b)      any purpose which the University considers necessary,

acquire and hold movable and immovable property, sell, lease, mortgage or otherwise alienate or dispose of that property and enter into any other transaction.

(2)       The halls, hostels and residential facilities for students, lecture halls, libraries,

hospitals, staff quarters, bungalows, guest houses, recreation grounds and any other tenements of the University shall be exempt from the assessments and rates levied by a local authority.

(3)       The intellectual property right in a creative work, research or other intellectual

enterprise, funded or otherwise undertaken with resources of the University shall vest in the University.

(4)       The Council shall enact Statutes in accordance with the laws on intellectual property to govern the creation, ownership and use of intellectual property including copyright, patents, trademarks, trade names and industrial designs by University employees.

(5)       The Council may borrow money on behalf of the University and may for this purpose use University property as security.

(6)       The Council shall in enacting the Statutes under subsection (4), determine the incentives for persons who undertake any work, research or other intellectual enterprise, funded or otherwise undertaken with resources of the University to enable those persons benefit from their work, research or intellectual enterprise.
Academic freedom

  1. (1) A Public University, in performing its functions shall—
    1. have the right and responsibility to preserve and promote the traditional principles of academic freedom in the conduct of its internal and external affairs;
    2. have power to regulate its affairs in accordance

with its independent ethos and traditions and in doing so it shall have regard to—

  1. the promotion and preservation of equality of opportunity

and access;

  1. effective and efficient use of resources; and
  • its obligations as to public accountability.
  • A member of the academic staff of a university shall have the

freedom, within the law, in the member’s teaching, research and any other activities either in or outside the university, to question and test received wisdom, to put forward new ideas and to state opinions, and shall not be disadvantaged, or subject to less favourable treatment by the university, for the exercise of that freedom.

Policy Directive

  1. The Minister may from time to time give policy directives through the National Council for Tertiary Education to the University and the University shall comply.

Anti-discrimination

43.(1) Without limiting the power of the University to adopt affirmative action policies, a Public University or an officer of a University shall not discriminate against a person on the basis of that person’s race, ethnic origin, political opinion, colour, gender, occupation, religion or creed, disability, social or economic status to determine whether that person is to be:
(a)       admitted as a student of a University;
(b)       registered as a student of a University;
(c)        permitted to graduate from a University;
(d)       appointed as an academic staff or other staff member;
(e)       promoted as an academic staff or other members; or

(f)         granted any advantage, privilege or other benefit accorded to all other

persons.

(2)       For the purpose of sub-section (1), “an officer of a Public University” includes a Principal Officer, staff or other employee, an agent, servant or any other person performing or acting in an official capacity for or on behalf of the University.

(3)        For the purpose of this section, “discriminate” means to give different treatment to different persons attributable only or mainly on the grounds stated in subsection (1).

Instruments of governance

44.Subject to the provisions of this Act, a Public university shall be governed in accordance with the provisions of its Act or Letter of Interim Authority granted under this Act and statutes made by its Council.

Dispute settlement

  1. (1) A Public University shall have an Appeals Board.(2)       The Appeals Board shall consist of
    (a)       a chairperson who is a retired justice of the Superior Courts of                                            Judicature or a lawyer qualified to be appointed as a justice of the

Superior Courts of Judicature;
(b)       two lawyers of at least ten years standing at the Bar who are persons                                           of high moral integrity and professional integrity, at least one of whom

is a woman; and

(c)        two persons who are not lawyers or employees of the University who                         are persons of high moral integrity, at least one of whom is a woman.

(3)       The Council shall appoint the members of the Appeals Board.

(4)       The Appeals Board shall hear and determine on appeal, matters on
(a)       an act or omission in contravention of this Act or the Statutes enacted                                                by the Council;
(b)       breach of an employment contract by the University;
(c)        the promotion of persons duly employed by the University;
(d)       grievances by a students against the University on matters related to                                      welfare and discipline; or

(e)       any other matter or dispute referred to the Appeals Board by the                                             Council.
(5)       The chairperson and two other members of the Appeals Board, constitute a

panel for the hearing and determination of a case or matter before the Appeals Board.
(6)       In the absence of the chairperson, one of the two lawyers as specified in paragraph (b) of sub-section (2), shall act as chairperson.

(7)      The Council shall establish the rules and procedure which govern
(a)       the proceedings of the Appeals Board;
(b)       the appointment and remuneration of the members of the

Appeals Board;
(c)        the functions of the acting chairperson of the Appeals Board;
(d)       the establishment of the Secretariat of the Appeals Board, and
(e)       any other relevant matter.

Interpretation

46.In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires
“Academic Board” means the body established under section 18;

“Appeals Board” means, the Appeals Board established under subsection (1) of section 42 (1);

“Convocation” means the Principal Officers of the University and all other      senior members of the University, appointed by the Council or the Academic            Board and who are registered by the Registrar as members of Convocation;

“Council” means the University Council established under section 5;

“Disclosure of interest” includes pecuniary, material, academic and relational interest in a matter being deliberated upon or decided upon by the University;

“Institute” means a multi-disciplinary research or service establishment which focuses primarily on multi-disciplinary research and on the provision of extension services;

“Minister” means the Minister responsible for Education;

“Pro Vice-Chancellor” means the person appointed under subsection (2) of                           section 17 to the office of Pro Vice-Chancellor of the University;

“Statutes of the University” means administrative guidelines enacted by the

Council in accordance with the Act to govern the internal operations of the

University; and

“Vice-Chancellor” means the person appointed under subsection (2) of section 16 to the office of Vice-Chancellor of the University.

Repeal and Savings

  1. (1) The following Acts and any other legislation related to the Public Universities listed in Second schedule of this Act shall be deemed repealed upon coming into force of this Act.
  • University of Ghana Act, 2010 Act 806
  • Kwame Nkrumah University of science and Technology, Kumasi Act– 1961 (Act 80)
  • University of Cape Coast Law– 1992 (PNDCL 278)
  • University of Education, Winneba Act, Act672 (2004)
  • Ghana institute of Management and Public administration Act, Act 676 2004
  • George Grant University of Mines and Technology Act University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa Act, 2004 Act677
  • Jerry John Rawlings University for Development Studies Act University for Development Studies Law– 1992 (PNDCL 279)
  • Nana Opoku Ampomah University of Professional Studies Act (Act566), 1999.
  • Komla Agbeli Gbedemah University of Health and Allied Sciences Act, Act 828 (2011)
  • Kofi Abrefa Busia University of Energy and Natural Resources Act, Act830, 2011
  • Technical university Act 922 as amended by Act 947

Transitional provisions

48.(1)  Until the establishment of a university Council under section 5, the Council of an existing University shall be an Interim Council of the university which shall function for a period not exceeding one year.

  • The President of the Republic may revise the composition of the Interim Council on the recommendation of the Minister given in consultation with the National Council for Tertiary Education or howsoever described.
  • The Interim Council shall perform the functions specified under section 6.
  • Any action taken by the Interim Council before the first meeting of a substantive university Council shall have the same effect as if done by the Council.
  • A university shall be guided in its operations by accredited universities in the country or abroad relevant to the mission of a university for a period of four years or as may be determined by the national body responsible for accreditation.

                                                  

FIRST SCHEDULE

 

OATH OF OFFICE

PART A

Section 13 (2), 17 (7) and 22 (8)

I, ……………………………………………….………………….do (in the name of the Almighty God (swear) (solemnly affirm) that I will at all times, well and truly serve the University of Media, Arts and Communications and the Republic of Ghana in the office of……………………………………………………………………… and that I will uphold, preserve, protect and defend the University as by law established (so help me God).

(To be sworn before the Minister or such other person as the President may designate).

 

PART B

OATH OF SECRECY

I, ………………………………………. holding the office of ……………………………. do (in the name of the Almighty God swear/solemnly affirm) that I will not directly or indirectly communicate or reveal to any person any matter which shall be brought under my consideration or shall come to my knowledge in the discharge of my official duties expect as may be required for the discharge of my official duties or as may be specially permitted by law. (So help me God)

(To be sworn before the President or such other person as the President may designate)

  

SECOND SCHEDULE

EXISTING PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES

University of Ghana

This is established to create an enabling environment that makes University of Ghana increasingly relevant to national and global development through cutting-edge research as well as high quality teaching and learning.

  1. Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

This university is to provide an environment for teaching, research and entrepreneurship training in Science and Technology for the industrial and socio-economic development of Ghana, Africa and other nations. KNUST also offers service to community, is open to all the people of Ghana and positioned to attract scholars, industrialists and entrepreneurs from Africa and other international community.

  1. University of Cape Coast

This is an equal opportunity university uniquely placed to provide quality education through the provision of comprehensive, liberal and professional programs that challenge learners to be creative, innovative, and morally responsible citizens. Through distance learning, it also extends expertise and facilities to train professionals for the education enterprise and business by employing modern technologies.

  1. University of Education, Winneba

The University is charged with the responsibility of producing professional educators to spearhead a new national vision of education aimed at redirecting Ghana’s efforts along the path of rapid economic and social development. The University of Education, Winneba is expected to play a leading role in the country’s drive to produce scholars whose knowledge would be fully responsive to the realities and exigencies of contemporary Ghana and the West African sub-region.

  1. Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration

The overarching object of the Institute is to train public servants of the country and to provide education, training and services in the fields of leadership, management and public administration for the public sector, private sector and non-governmental organizations.

  1. George Grant University of Mines and Technology

The mission is to provide higher education in mining, petroleum, technology and related disciplines through effective teaching and learning; to promote knowledge through active research and dissemination of information and to offer professional services through extension activities to the mining and allied industries.

  1. Jerry John Rawlings University for Development Studies

The University’s principal objective is to address and find solutions to the environmental problems and socio-economic deprivations that have characterized northern Ghana in particular and are also found in some rural areas throughout the rest of the country.

  1. Nana Opoku Ampomah University of Professional Studies

This is established to provide and promote higher professional education and training in business and other social sciences related disciplines by leveraging a structured mix of scholarship with professionalism in Ghana and beyond.

  1. Komla Agbeli Gbedemah University of Health and Allied Sciences

To provide higher education in the Health Sciences through teaching and research for persons suitably qualified and capable of benefitting from such education. To disseminate knowledge and the results of research and their applications to the needs and aspirations of the people of Ghana. To provide clinical and other skills services to contribute positively to improving the health status and overall quality of life, and foster partnerships with outside persons and bodies.

  1. Kofi Abrefa Busia University of Energy and Natural Resources

This is to promote the development of human resources and skills required to solve critical energy and natural resources challenges of society and undertake interdisciplinary academic, research, and outreach programmes in engineering, science, economics and environmental policy.

  1. Technical Universities

By: Kekeli Kuatsenu/awakenewsonline.com