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Tamale Technical University College wins court case against Anbariya Islamic Institute



A High Court in Tamale has ordered the Anbarriya Islamic Institute to vacate with immediate effect their illegal occupation of the structures of the Technical University College located at Viting off the Salaga road.

The Court also found four members of the Islamic Institute guilty of contempt for organizing and leading a mob attack on the staff and students of the university college.

Presided by Mr. Justice Richard Mac Kugyaphaw, the court ruled that the occupation of the university’s properties by the Islamic institute has no basis in law, hence Anbariya must vacate the premises pending the outcome of the substantive case of a land dispute between the two institutions.

Tamale Technical University College wins court case against Anbariya Islamic Institute

The case between these two institutions started in 2010 after years of being together.

The Ambariya Islamic Institute after the death of its leader filed a case at the High Court following a disagreement over the ownership of the land and other properties of the university.

However, whilst the case was ongoing, some alleged disgruntled members of the Islamic Institute in April 2022 reportedly claimed that the court was delaying in bringing finality to the matter, and therefore mobilized themselves to attack and forcefully eject the staff and students of the university.

The attack was organized via Whatsapp where all Anbariya faithful were called upon to invade the university.

It all started on Saturday the 26th of June, 2022, when two individuals were sighted digging within the premise of the university.

The University’s Principal Dr. Osman Al-Hassa, and the Registrar, Mumuni Alaru, who were both on campus that day, decided to confront the individuals to establish their identity and mission.

Tamale Technical University College wins court case against Anbariya Islamic Institute

The two men who were later found to be members of the Anbariya Islamic Institute got infuriated that the principal and his administrator came to ask them why they were digging on the university land when the matter was still in court.

Suddenly, the two men began to behave violently which attracted other members of the Islamic Institute in the neighborhood to mass up at the school.

Soon, the marauding Anbariya Islamists began to flinch stones and other offensive objects at the Principal and his Registrar who had to flee the scene to save their lives.

The same day, a senior imam of the Islamic Institute put out a voice recording on Whatsapp asking inviting the followers to come out in their numbers to attack the university and its staff and students.

The police were informed but no practical action was taken against the attackers.  The police however only invited the leadership of the Institute, including the originator of the voice recording, and admonished them to desist from carrying out their planned illegal action on the university.

Then on Monday, the 28th of June, while students were waiting to start writing their end-of-semester exams and despite the warning by the police, a huge crowd of Anabariya followers, including students, violently descended on the university from all directions.

They staged a rampage in the school, attacking everything on site whilst chanting ‘Allah Akbar, Allah Akbar.

Tamale Technical University College wins court case against Anbariya Islamic Institute

Soon, they were able to chase out the students and staff and proceeded to occupy the classrooms and other structures of the school.

In the process of the attack, the Anbariya mob destroyed the properties of the school and also committed physical abuses against the principal and his staff.

The Principal although rescued by the police through the firing of multiple gunshots, it was not until the mob broke his nose and severely damaged his medicated spectacles.

Days later, some old students of the school from the south of the country who unknowingly went to the school to ask about their certificates were kidnapped and brutalized.

After several backchannel attempts to resolve the stalemate, including the involvement of chiefs and other opinion leaders, the university sued the Islamic Institute for contempt demanding their eviction from university land and punishment against the attackers.

On Monday, the 30th of January, the High Court presided by Mr. Justice Richard Mac Kogyapwah, found four persons guilty of contempt for the violent attack and legal occupation of the university’s properties.

“I find 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 7th Respondents liable in contempt”, the judge ruled. “I find them GHc3,000,00 each and in default two months’ imprisonment each”.

Justice a Kogyapwah also ordered the restoration of the status quo ante which means that Anbariya pending the outcome of the substantive suit filed by the Islamic Institute.

“I further order the Technical University College Tamale premises occupied by the Anbariya senior high school to be vacated and all destroyed property restored for the Technical University College Tamale students to resume habitation pending the determination of the suit”.

Speaking to JoyNews, the Principal of the University, Dr. Osman Al-hassan, described the ruling as a victory for democracy and rule of law.

“It is a win for democracy”, Dr. Osman stated.

He added that “the cardinal principle of any democracy is the rule of law, and when citizens begin to take the law into their own hands, democracy suffers. So, this is an excellent ruling by the High Court”.

He also said the ruling was crucial for the survival of the university as he bemoaned the challenges the university has had to go through following the illegal occupation by Anbariya Islamic Institute.

“All our equipment for training our nurses, students information, and certificates are situated there. The instruments for the student to do their practicals are locked in there, so this is a fantastic ruling and we are so pleased with the court’s decision”.

The Principal says he expects immediate enforcement of the ruling.

“They have to leave the place”, the Principal declared. “It is a court judgment and they cannot do anything about it but abide by the judgment of the court”.

The illegal occupation of the university has resulted in the displacement of the students now forced to relocate to a satellite campus located at Dungu off the Tamale – Bolga highway.

Here, the classrooms and other training and learning materials are acutely in short supply. The students are forced to share desks and study in poorly ventilated halls.

They are therefore happy about this judgment of the court and appealed for its immediate enforcement.

This ruling will also grant the way for the proceeding of the substantive suit to resume.



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