The Ministry of Finance, has granted financial clearance to public universities in the country to recruit new academic staff to augment their faculties to ensure quality education at the tertiary level.
The President, John Dramani Mahama, who announced this at the first congregation of the University of Health and Allied Sciences (Uhas) in Ho on Saturday, said a total of 1,018 lecturers, would be recruited as requested by the universities.
“The good news is that, the approval given by the finance ministry is to recruit 1,018 lecturers, which the full request made by the public universities. So the numbers have not been reviewed,” Mahama said.
Mr Mahama, disclosed that special allocations have been made in the GetFund budget towards the provision of physical infrastructure and other facilities for both Uhas and the University of Energy and Natural Resources in the Brong Ahafo region.
The university, established by the late President John Mills in December 2011 through an Act of Parliament, had its first students intake in September 2012.
“We have set in motion, processes of converting the UDS (University of Development Studies) campuses in the two upper regions into autonomous public universities. The bill for the university in Eastern region has also been passed and very soon I will cut the sod for commencement of work there.”
A total of 171 students graduated from the Uhas with degrees in the various health related disciplines, including nursing, midwifery, public health, laboratory sciences, physician assistantship among others.
The foundation Vice Chancellor of the Uhas, Professor Fred Binka in his report said the university has made significant strides in its four years of existence, and announced that processes are underway for the commencement of Uhas School of Pharmacy at Keta.
According to him, the region has begun benefitting from the existence of the university, as hundreds of its students are deployed to all district hospitals for community service during the long vacations.
“Also, our access and top-up programmes have become the toast for many healthcare practitioners who wants to acquire degrees using their certificates and diplomas,” Prof. Binka added.
Prof. Binka, who is ending his four-year tenure as vice chancellor of Uhas, expressed gratitude to all stakeholders for their supports and sacrifices in nurturing the infant university, and urged the graduating students to remain worthy ambassadors of the university.
As part of the maiden graduation, the university also conferred honorary doctorate degrees on the wife of the late President, Mrs. Ernestina Naadu Mills, Professor Samuel Sefah Dedeh and Dr. Christian Botchway.