Asogli State protests renaming of Ho Technical University?

The Asogli State Council has registered strong disapproval of a planned renaming of the Ho Technical University (HTU).

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Technical University in 2018, endorsed a proposal by the Governing Council to rename the Institution after historic Ghanaian cultural icon, Dr Ephraim Amu, an indigene of the Volta Region.

Chiefs of the traditional State of the Volta regional capital vehemently rejected the proposal at a press conference on Monday, six years after the President made public the planned move.

Togbe Adzie Lakle Howusu XII, the Warlord of the State, said the University remained a revered establishment of the Asogli State, and recounted how the community bore manual labour to support its construction by the Dutch Government in 1968 as a technical school.

He therefore said the proposed name change would challenge efforts to preserve the history and relevance of the Institution, adding that Dr Amu, a Composer, musicologist, and tea
cher, the individual to receive the honour and fame, shared little with the disposition as a technical University.

Togbe Howusu decried the lack of consultation with traditional authorities over the new name, and alleged some possible political undertones in the renaming, which he claimed was being planned for execution sooner.

‘The attention of the Asogli State Council has once again been drawn to the attempts by the authorities of the Ho Technical University and the Government to rename the institute to Dr Ephraim Amu Technical University.

‘The Asogli State Council wishes to reaffirm our strong opposition to the government’s decision to rename the University without any consultation with the Chiefs and people of Ho who played a crucial role in the establishment of this Institute,’ he said.

He said the Ho Technical University, an esteemed institution in the public domain, held a special place in the Volta Region, particularly for the people of Asogli State on whose land the University was situated.

have a strong attachment to the University’s brand, which is steadily gaining recognition both nationally and Internationally,’ he stated.

Togbe Howusu said it was imperative that this progress and reputation remained undisturbed as frequent changes in the University’s name could lead to confusion among stakeholders, including students, alumni and the public regarding its identity and mission.

‘Our concern is heightened by the fact that the proposed name does not align with the University in any way. Names carry significant meanings and can impact institutions positively or negatively. The name of a university is closely tied to its history, identity, values, or mission.

He said as much as the Chiefs and people of Asogli State recognise the achievements of Dr Ephraim Amu and his contributions to the development of the country, these achievements, and contributions, though laudable, had limited relevance to the academic programmes and mission of the Ho Technical University.

Togbe Howusu said the Asogli Sta
te Council wished to remind the authorities of the Ho Technical University that major decisions affecting the University should be made in consultation with the relevant stakeholders, to avoid conflict and unnecessary confrontation.

‘We do not understand the motive behind the rush to rename the Ho Technical University and cannot see any serious justification for such a move other than for political expediency,’ re-echoed their total objection to the attempt to rename the University.

‘Our position is that the name of the Institute should remain ‘Ho Technical University,’ this is our position, and we firmly stand by it.’

Present at the press conference were chiefs and queens of the Asogli State, all who together processed to present copies of the petition to the Regional Minister, Dr Archibald Letsa, the Municipal Chief Executive for Ho, Mr Divine Bosson and the Management of the Ho Technical University.

‘What will happen if this name change goes ahead will not be pleasant,’ Togbe Howusu would say, while gi
ving out the petition.’

Dr Christopher Amehoe, the Registrar of the University, told the traditional council that presently there were no plans to rename the Institution, saying that the initial idea had been put on hold since 2018.

He gave the assurance that the petition would reach the appropriate quarters.

Source: Ghana News Agency