At the maiden showdown themed “Level 100’s Time with the President”, an equivalent of the nation’s president meets the press, the University of Education Winneba, Kumasi Campus (UEW-K) Student Representative Council (SRC) President, Samuel Clinton Boateng who has admonished students in his opening statement said “Stop dramatizing your challenges.”
Though the president arrived almost two hours into the program on Saturday, February 22, 2020, he was greeted with loud cheers and the reverse of his popular quote, “We love you too Mr. President.” He acknowledged the efforts of Mr. Gordon Daniel Asiedu and his team for their vision and execution the program.
At the start of the program with about a hundred level 100 students seated eagerly to hail questions about difficulties to life and academics on the campus at their president were rather led through the initial stages of the program by the SRC General Secretary, Isaac Osei Buabeng who said “The president is out of the region but he has assured him that he will soon be us. We will start the session and I will provide answers to some while the president addresses the ones I cant when he arrives.”
William Agyei Gideon, an Information Technology Education (ITE) student was the first to remark “We pay no heed to time. We have been seated for about 40 minutes and nothing to show. We are becoming leaders and we must consciously be aware of time since there are other pertinent programs to attend to.”
Students’ ID Card and Portal
The General Secretary, Mr. Isaac Osei Buabeng referred to the interview of the Head of Management Information System (MIS) on MYND FM on the Campus Filla Show to quell the frustration the students have registered. He urged students to listen to MYND FM regularly since most issues are addressed through their programs.
The President noted not knowing when the problem will be resolved said, “The student portal isssue is a perennial problem and as an IT student in my sober reflection, i am hurting since the bigger problem has not been resolved. ” He recounted efforts made by Management to address the problem and how some Head of Departments, most especially the HOD of Mathematics Education, Dr. F. O. Boateng’s contributions towards building a database system will yield results.
Mr. Clinton lamented how Management has taken entrenched position regarding publication of students report and how all efforts put in by the SRC has yielded no results.
Safety on the Highway
The student body has laid out plans to make government listen to them since their lives matter. One participant recounted how unbearable it is in the early hours of every morning and evening to cross the roads in order to attend lectures or get back home after Mr. Clinton has explained how they have solicited for help from the Police in the Kwadaso Municipality, the Regional Minister and the Road and Highways Ministry but all proved futile.
The call was made to government to install traffic light to regulate vehicular movements or dispatch the police to aid the students to cross or put up a structure that will help the students cross without interfering in the movements of the cars.
Mr. Clinton gave chronology of events and initiatives taken about securing the lives of students which has always been met with the simple answer “We don’t have money and as to when we have the money, the contractor will move to site.” That response was greeted with “Let’s demonstrate” to which the president said “I support any civil action to drive home our need only if due process is followed.”
The General Secretary shared with the student the experience of the near-death encounter the president was subjected to when he was attacked by some armed-men. He urged students to avoid using dangerous route or short-cuts in the nights.
The President said “The SRC do not have that capacity to put up a structure as a police post on campus but we are fortunate to have the Deputy Ambassador to China, popularly called Dr China who is willing to see to the construction of police post on campus. He added “We beg you! Security begins with the individual. You are your first security man.”
To digest the issue further, Mr. Clinton praised management for their efforts towards the installation of some street lights to aid visibility and added “Akwamaman Rural Bank has promised to supply ten pieces of street lights that will be installed to improved security.”
Learning facilities and Internet Access
Mr. Clinton Boateng shared in the plight of the students and assured them of steps management has taken to alleviate the problem. “As we speak, we (SRC) took the initiative to procure about 200 chairs but the cost of 250 US dollars per one has made us to backtrack on the decision. Management has assured us of procuring about 3,000 chairs in the near future.”
One student submitted how the Reynold Okai Building (ROB), popularly called Faculty seems to be weakening at some parts as they go about their lecture activities.
Mr. Buabeng beckoning the students said “Let us try to avoid the combine classes since each lecture hall can take just about 120 students.
“We shall get there” he said with a smile when the issue of access to internet was raised. “I sincerely think that SRC has challenges with regards to expanding access to internet” he added. Although Local Assembly (L/A) Members were against his decision to use SRC resources to expand the access of internet to Automony Hall, nothing will deter as he said “This is a test of leadership and we are bent on expanding WiFi to everywhere on campus.”
He urged the subsequent administration that will be formed to continue with projects that are pending completion.
The SRC Bus
“Let me be very frank. When I sit down in my reflective mode as Samuel Boateng Clinton and not as SRC President, I come to the conclusion that, we as SRC couldn’t manage our affairs well” he lamented.
Though the battle isn’t over because we are not able to find the veracity of the long standing issues, we have put in the necessary works to get the bus working and “We should be able to get the bus back on campus and hitting the roads by Friday, February 28, 2020.” He assured that the bus will run a test system by conveying students to campus in and around its immediate environment.
The president gave a break down of activities towards the construction an ultra-modern 2000 capacity hostel that will have a sport complex, pool and parking lot. He added how the State Insurance Company (SIC) is a major contributor towards achieve this milestone.
Issues on Disability
The president who found it pains-takingly hard to pronounce “disabled” and also declared his fight against discrimination of the disabled, proposed that his administration will work hard to put smiles on their faces by creating disability friendly environment. He stated “I thank the L/A for instituting the Disability Friendly Fund.” “We are looking at oragnising sporting activities for them so that they can also feel the sense of belongingness” he added
“Interestingly, if you take a look at my manifesto, you wont see the mention of souvenirs since other important issues need to be addressed to accelerate academic work” the president said. He explained that the delay is due to the import and export restriction since the emergence of the Coronavirus. Assuring the students, he said “The souvenirs will arrive and disburse before I exit office.”
In an interview with MYND FM correspondent, the convener for the program, Mr Gordon popularly called SUGAR thanked the students for making the program a success and proposed a possible second events where other dignitaries may be in attendance. Some prominent continuing students were in attendance to observed the process.
Erich ‘Qillah’ Odonkor