Former President, Jerry John Rawlings is asking the Ministry of Education to withdraw the clause that seeks to rename the University of Development Studies (UDS) in his honour from the new University Bill.
In a post on Facebook, he reiterated his earlier position with which he turned down the request two years ago when it was first brought before him.
According to the founder of the UDS, he does want the institution to be renamed after him because of his principle not to have any monument named for him.
Mr. Rawlings, therefore, wants the Education Minister to without delay, withdraw that aspect of the Bill before it is laid before Parliament.
“When the proposal for the naming of the UDS was first brought to the former President’s attention by the Education Minister in 2017, he thanked the President and the government for the honour, but politely declined the offer because he had a long-standing principle not to have national monuments and facilities named after him.”
“The former President has since the publication of the details of the new Bill to be tabled to Parliament written to the Minister of Education to reiterate his position and kindly requested that the re-naming of UDS after him be withdrawn from the Draft Bill to be submitted to Parliament”, the post added.
There have been attempts by previous governments to rename some national edifices after the First President of the fourth Republic without success.
Despite this, a popular spot in the central business district of Accra has his name around it as the Rawlings Circle.
In 2015, his own party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) decided to name the Offshore Cape Three Points Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) after him, a move he rejected.
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Gov’t to rename four public universities in new draft Bill
Four public universities in the country will be renamed after the newly drafted Public University Bill is adopted and passed by Parliament without any amendments.
The affected institutions include the University of Development Studies, the University of Professional Studies Accra, the University of Health and Allied Sciences, as well as the University of the Energy and Natural Resources.
It is expected that the University of Development Studies will be renamed after the first President under the Fourth Republic, Jerry John Rawlings.
The University of Professional Studies, Accra will be renamed after its founder, Nana Opoku Ampomah.
A former member of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) and Convention People’s Party (CPP) will be honoured with University of Health and Allied Sciences while the University of Energy and Natural Resources is to be named in honour of former Prime Minister of Ghana, Kofi Abrefa Busia.
President Akufo-Addo officially renamed the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) to the George Grant University of Mines and Technology, after the first President of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC).
He has also announced that the Wa Polytechnic will be named after Ghana’s former President, Dr. Hilla Liman