Dear friends and supporters,
We are now almost four months into our campaign, which began with the intention of saving the MRes History of Africa and the African Diaspora and Professor Hakim Adi’s post from being axed by the University of Chichester. It has become a new fight, as it is clear that the university has no intention of reinstating either. The university has directed a brutal attack on our studies, future careers, and history as a discipline.
Chichester University has thrown us into a state of confusion, and it is only through our unity and resolve as the largest cohort of postgraduate History students of African descent in the UK that we continue to stand as a collective and challenge their actions.
We have sought legal advice to hold the university accountable for breaking the UK Equality Act of 2010 and its code of conduct. Alongside challenging the treatment we have received as students, we stand in solidarity with Professor Adi, our supervisor and course coordinator, in fighting for the defence of our history that is under attack across the higher education sector on a global scale.
We enrolled at the University of Chichester specifically to access the mentorship, knowledge and expertise of a world-leading scholar in the historical field and to access a unique, one-of-a-kind pathway to becoming future historians of Africa and the African Diaspora.
In making Professor Adi redundant, the university has made itself unsuitable to support us. We must clarify that we refuse to continue our studies at the university without Professor Adi, and replacing him will be challenged.
The University of Chichester has repeatedly demonstrated that not only do they have no sympathy for the extreme upset they have caused their students with their unfounded decision, but they also have no appreciation for how much we have contributed to the institution or historical field more broadly.
For example, the university recently incorrectly stated that the MRes course has only produced one graduate in the last three years, which is a heinous and easily disprovable lie. The MRes has produced nine graduates in the stated amount of time, six of whom have gone on to study for their PhD at Chichester. As the university undoubtedly has a record of its past and current students, this lie highlights the lengths Chichester will go to discredit the successful MRes initiative and disrespect its students. Without Professor Adi, we see no future at Chichester and will keep up the struggle to find a new home for him and the MRes course. Both are too essential for the academic world to lose.
The Struggle Continues
A.S. Francis – PhD student
Danny Thompson – PhD student
Claudius Adisa Stephens – PhD student
Aziz Abdulhay – PhD student
Tirivashe Jele – PhD student
Elaine Buchanan – PhD student
Rey Bowen – PhD student
Marlene Worrell - PhD student
Esther Stanford-Xosei, PhD Student
Meserette Kentake - MRes student
Leanard Phillip - MRes student
Emmanuel Amevor MRes student
Jabari Osaze - MRes Student
Petra Toyin Haynes - MRes Student
Gillian Benneh - MRes Student
Del White - MRes Student