Residents of the University Hall, popular known as the ‘Katanga Hall’ of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), last week took their advocacy for the restoration of the hall to an all-male one a notch higher by following President Akufo-Addo around as he toured the Ashanti region, TheNewsGh.com reports.
Donned in their famous yellow strip with black inscriptions, dozens of student resident at Katanga Hall were spotted by MyNewsGh.com following the President on his tour, wielding placards, accompanied by a brass band ostensibly to catch the President’s attention.
The group was first spotted at the Manhyia Palace on Wednesday, 9th October, 2019, showing the President and his entourage placards as the motorcade made its way to the parking lot.
Some of the placards read; “restore peace, restore Katanga”, “mix Katanga s3n”, “Obiri Danso you shall continue to see Katanga in your dreams”, “Nana Katanga da woase” and “Katanga=male hall”.
The President had gone to the Manhyia Palace to pay a courtesy call on Asantehene, Otumfour Osei Tutu II who is also the chancellor of the KNUST.
On Thursday 10th October, 2019, the group followed the President again to Mpanya, near Asante Mampong where the president launched the second medical drone delivery centre.
They managed to catch the attention of President Akufo Addo when they staged a brief “jama” session in front of him before he gave his address; the President acknowledged their gesture by saying “thank you Katanga”.
The group wants government to reverse the conversion of the hall into a mixed one.
Katanga was converted alongside the two other single-sex halls; all male Unity Hall (Conti) and Africa Hall which was exclusive to female students until the beginning of the2018/2019 academic year.
The university authorities say the conversion of all the halls to unisex has created space for females amid growing population of the institution.
In September, government urged authorities of the KNUST to reconsider their decision of turning all-male Katanga Hall into a mixed one.
Education Minister, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh in a letter to the Chairman of the University Council explained that the move is “To preserve a peaceful and conducive environment for academic work and cordial relationship in the University.”
“I, therefore, wish to reiterate the position of government on this matter that (Katanga) University Hall remain a male hall of residence as prevailing in other sister universities e.g Commonwealth Hall in UG, Casely-Hayford Hall in UCC, Union, ECOWAS and Savannah Halls in UDS,” he added.
The position of government has yet to be effected by school; it has however said the recommendations of the Otumfuo Committee would be implemented.
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