The dismissed Vice-Chancellor of the University of Education, Winneba (UEW), Professor Mawutor Avoke, and the Finance Director of the university, Theophilus Senyo Ackorlie, both failed to resume work on Monday, 26 November, 2018 as they threatened earlier following a Supreme Court ruling.
They wrote to the university’s Governing Council last week through their lawyers, asking them to prepare the offices of their clients to enable them to resume work today.
The Supreme Court on Wednesday, 31 October, 2018 by a unanimous decision, quashed, by certiorari, the judgment of the Winneba High Court, presided over by Justice George Ato Mills-Graves, dated 2 May, 2018 in connection with the removal of Prof Mawutor Avoke as Vice-Chancellor of the UEW.
The apex court of the land noted that having failed to take evidence from the parties before purporting to grant a judgment in default of defence on purely declaratory reliefs, the high court grievously erred and the said error was patent on the face of the record.
By this unanimous decision, the judgment of the Winneba High Court, based on which Prof Avoke was removed from office, stands quashed and is, therefore, null and void and of no effect.
Prof Avoke and five principal officers of the university were dismissed per the high court judgment.
The Winneba High Court in 2017 ordered Professor Avoke, prior to his dismissal, to step aside until a case brought against him and the university’s Governing Council, was determined.
The order was made in a case brought before the court by one Supi Kofi Kwayera, who insisted that the vice-chancellor and the finance officer were operating under the institution’s defunct governing council.
The university, through its lawyers, even before the substantive claims were looked into, applied to the court to dismiss the suit on the three counts. The court, however, dismissed their application.
The high court subsequently found Prof Avoke and the school’s finance officer, guilty of procurement and other financial irregularities.
They were interdicted in July 2017 by the UEW Governing Council to allow for investigations after it emerged that some vital documents at some offices at the centre of an ongoing investigation, had gone missing.
Meanwhile, lawyers for Prof. Mawutor Avoke, and Dr Theophilus Senyo Ackorlie, have stated that they will head to court again in a bid to compel the university to reinstate their clients.
According to one of their lawyers, Harold Atuguba, who spoke on Citi FM on Monday, November 26, 2018 they advised their clients to stay away from the school, following the threats from the UEW’s Governing Council.
He stated that they would seek a ruling from the court to force the university to welcome their clients back.
“There is a recipe for chaos and we have advised our clients not to go there and raise the political barometer. What we know best is to secure the rights and secure all the entitlements of our clients through the law courts.
“If some group of persons feel they have a sense of entitlement so they can use brute force to circumvent the law, we will not engage them on that path. What we will do is go back to the court and have the court enforce the effect of their judgment,” he said.
Story: Franklin ASARE-DONKOH
Writer’s email: firstname.lastname@example.org