The absence of the Education Minister, Dr. Mathew Opuku-Prempeh and his counterpart in-charge of Tertiary, Prof. Kwasi Yankah at the congregation of the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in the Volta region has stoked controversy among attendees including some members of the UHAS community.
Dr. Opoku-Prempeh, who was prominently featured in the Congregation brouchure as the Guest of Honour, was conspicuously missing at the ceremony, which was the second since the start of the university in 2012.
Unlike last year, where then President Mahama and his functionaries were present at the first UHAS congregation, this time round, not even any of the current two deputies at the Education ministry was at the function, except the Executive Secretary of the National Accreditation Board (NAB), Mr. Kwame Dartey who was delegated by the Minister.
This, however, did not go down well with some of the university staff, graduands and their parents, who expressed some reservations about the ministerial ‘snub’.
After the ceremony, some people were questioning the commitment of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government towards the institution, which was birthed by the erstwhile Presidents John Mills and Mahama led NDC administration.
“How can there be an education minister, another minister of state in that ministry, with two other deputies and not a single one of them could grace the graduation ceremony of a new university like UHAS. Is that how this government is going to treat us,” a resentful staff told colleagues, at the UHAS main campus at Sokode-lokoe near Ho.
With no proper explanation given about the minister’s absence, others were left with no option than to inference the ‘mockery’ some elements of the then opposition NPP, made about the establishment of the university 2011 by the late Prof. Mills.
They believe the NPP government and its appointees are now being haunted by their previous conducts, hence the inability of the minister to attend the congregation.
Interestingly, the Volta Regional Minister, Dr. Archibald Letsa who probably pre-empted such kind of resentment about the situation, earlier told the congregation of plans to get President Akufo-Addo attend the next graduation ceremony of the university.
Meanwhile, a total of 376 students graduated with Bachelor of Science (Bsc) degrees in various health related disciplines from the Schools of Public Health, Medicine, Allied Health Sciences, as well as Nursing and Midwifery.