Annual NWU Lecture on Academic Freedom 2021

Hybrid event: NWU, Council Chambers C1-135 AND Zoom (If you wish to attend by Zoom, please RSVP below.)

RSVP for Zoom


Annual NWU Lecture on Academic Freedom by Prof. Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua, School of Law, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra

The Coloniality of Higher Education in Africa, the Decolonisation Agenda, and Academic Freedom

Programme for Annual Lecture

Prof Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua


Coloniality of higher education in Africa refers to the quality of the continent’s higher educational system being or remaining colonial. It is used in this context to refer to long-standing patterns of power ensuing from colonialism and contributing to define knowledge production, culture, labour, and inter-subjective relations. It, therefore, has linkages to the “second colonialism” – colonisation of the mind; and the “third colonialism” – exercise of vestiges of colonial power by the State. The purpose for the establishment of higher education in Africa during the colonial era was to maintain, after colonialism, the politico-economic framework put in place by the colonial enterprise. Read more


Prof. Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua


LL.B (Hons) (UG), BL (GSL), LL.M (Dal), DCL (McGill) Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua is Associate Professor at the School of Law, University of Ghana (UG), Legon, Accra where he teaches Public International Law and International Human Rights Law. He is also the representative lecturer from UG in the LL.M Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation, Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa. Kwadwo is a member of the Ghana Bar Association. He completed his LLB at UG and his professional law degree at the Ghana School of Law. Thereafter, he proceeded to Dalhousie University and McGill University, both in Canada, for his LLM and DCL programmes, respectively. He was a Bank of Ireland Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the Irish Centre for Human Rights, National University of Ireland. Kwadwo recently completed his Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowship at Centre for Educational Research and Development, Lincoln University, UK where he conducted research on “Building Academic Freedom and Democracy in Africa.” He is a member of the Global Alliance for Justice Education (GAJE), USA and executive member, Jacobs-Abbey Global Institute for Leadership Studies, Woodbridge, VA, USA. Kwadwo has served as a consultant for various inter-governmental organisations and international civil society organisations such as United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) on its Education for Justice (E4J) initiative; the Open Society Foundation’s Global Program on Drug Policy (GPDP) and Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA). He is a board member of the Global Observatory on Academic Freedom, Central European University, Vienna, Austria. Kwadwo is also a member of the recently established UN Working Group on Academic Freedom formed as a follow-up to the release of the 2020 report on academic freedom by the then-UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression.

Previous Years' Lectures


Contact Details
For more information, please contact - Prof. Klaus D. Beiter / 076 260 1888 (Faculty of Law)