Catholic University In Financial Crisis

The Catholic University of Ghana (CUG) located at Fiapre in the Sunyani municipality of the Brong-Ahafo Region, is on the verge of collapse because it is said to be cash strapped and for that matter, cannot pay its lecturers and other staff.

For three months now lecturers, administrative staff and the ancillary workers have reportedly not received salaries, making life unbearable to them, DAILY GUIDE has gathered.

As part of measurers to save the university from total collapse, it has started laying off lecturers it claims are on contract and no longer needs their services. Others too have voluntarily resigned whilst a few ones have gone on pension and cannot be replaced due to the volatile financial situation.

The Vice Chancellor, Professor Daniel Obeng-Ofori, confirmed this to DAILY GUIDE in an interview.

Eight lecturers who have been laid off without service benefits are threatening to go to court, if the institution fails to pay them their salaries spanning three months, plus end-of-service benefits by the end of this month. They accused the VC – who took over the administration of the university just a little over a year ago – of dictatorial leadership style hence, the collapsing of the university.

Professor Obeng-Ofori, though agreed that some lecturers were laid off, insisted that it was not dismissal. Rather, their tenure of contracts had ended and that because the school is overstaffed, their contracts were not renewed.

He described the situation at the university before he took over as academic jungle because there was no prudent financial management, thereby putting liquidity problem on the institution since 2012. He said there were lecturers who taught only three hours in a week and at the end of the month drew salaries.

He noted that that was not proper and so recommend to the university council to ask all lecturers to reapply and those whose services are no longer needed as a result of staff rationalization, be laid off.

“Again, because of some people’s own personal gains, dubious contracts were entered into, putting financial burden on the institution; so I had to abrogate some of the contracts which we are trying to pay now,” he bemoaned.

He said the school authorities were finding ways to raise funds to pay the affected teachers, including establishing an endowment fund to finance the school.

He explained that the founders of the school thought school fees could have been used to run the school, but that had failed because students’ population kept dwindling over the years, affecting the school’s finances. He said the school, which used to boast of over 4,000 students, can now boast of only a little over a 1,000 due to multiplicity of factors.