NUGS is uncomfortable with the proposition by the NCCE that activities of political party groupings on university campuses should be banned.
Any such attempt to ban the activities of these groupings is (1) Contrary to the 1992 Constitution - Article 21 (1)e “All persons shall have the right to freedom of association, which shall include freedom to form or join trade unions or other associations, national or international, for the protection of their interest” and Article 3(2) “Any activity of a person or group of persons which suppresses or seeks to suppress the lawful political activity of any other person or any class of person, or persons generally is unlawful. (2) Lethal to our growing democracy.
The NCCE or any other institution that attempts such a move to ban the activities of political groupings on tertiary campuses will be acting ultra-vires its powers.
NUGS wishes to reiterate that, the activities of TEIN and TESCON are healthy for our democracy provided they play within the rules. The concern of NCCE should rather be aimed at regulating the conduct of these groupings and not their outright abolishment.
It will appear the NCCE wants an easy way to execute its mandate. The proper thing to do is to ensure sound debate amongst these groups at the tertiary level to imbue in them the spirit of tolerance – which is necessary for the body politic of democracy. In other places this model has worked perfectly, why not here?
In the US for instance, the student democrats and republicans debate on issues that reflect each party’s position on matters like the economy, health care, education, unemployment etc. Through this medium, new ideas emanate for policy makers to use to solve the problems that plaque the country. In the absence of this forum, interest parties will find other uses for these groupings – one of such use, is to employ them as vehicles to insult their political opponents, and that is not healthy. But one cannot say that because there is a chance TEIN and TESCON may be employed for ill purposes, let us abolish it altogether – that is like saying that let us abolish NDC and NPP and all other political parties because there is a chance they will be corrupt when in power.
Like Darwin’s theory of evolution; if we will allow ideas to compete effectively, the fittest will survive to help us chart a recommended path towards national development. We must encourage creativity and innovation as a country and the way to go is to encourage debate between the political groupings on tertiary campuses to churn out ideas for national development.
The NCCE should come again. There are more constructive ways to solve the issue.
Source: Peter Kwasi Kodjie (President-NUGS) (0242879028) ...Courage Kwasi Nobi (Gen. Secretary-NUGS)..(0206497320)
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