Thursday, August 20, 2015 11:56 am
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt.
Professor Rosamund Osahagulu, the Vice Chancellor of Ignatius Ajuru University, Port Harcourt who was allegedly kidnapped on 20 June and ‘released’ by her abductors on 26 June has been sacked by Governor Nyesom Wike with immediate effect. Her sack may be connected to her alleged abduction that has been under police investigation.
In a statement signed by Mr. Kie Obumanu, Director of Media and Publicity in the office of the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, today, Wike ordered Professor Mrs Osahagulu to proceed on compulsory leave and hand over to the Deputy Vice Chancellor with immediate effect. No reason was given for her sack.
The female Vice Chancellor whose alleged abduction by gunmen on June 20 as she was leaving the campus of the Rivers Government-owned institution and released six days later has been under investigation by the security agents on circumstances surrounding her alleged kidnap.
About two weeks later, a new twist emerged over the drama when the University management slammed a three-month suspension on Professor Joshua Osahagulu, who is also the husband of the Vice Chancellor for alleged conspiracy in the kidnap of his wife.
But the university branch of Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has kicked against the suspension of the VC’s husband, describing it as unfair and unjust and has called on the management to reverse the decision until a thorough investigation is carried out on the matter.
ASUU Chairman of the university, Dr. Ugochukwu Agey said the union is pissed off with the way Prof. Joshua Osahagulu was suspended simply based on the statement he made over the abduction of his wife without thorough probe into the circumstances surrounding it.
As at the time of filing this report, it was unclear what the evidence before the university management is before it suspended the VC’s husband. “We are aware that he has been suspended without thorough investigation. We are calling on the university management to reverse the suspension,” ASUU had said.
The ASUU Chairman had pointed out that the hasty action of the University management was capable of bringing the image of the Ivory Tower to disrepute and called on Wike, who is the Visitor of the University, to intervene as a matter of urgency.
He did not, however, disclose the exact location of her release or if any ransom was paid for her freedom. The abduction of the vice chancellor threw the academic community into a state of shock. Unions, associations and groups in the academic community mounted pressure on the police to rescue her. The VC was allegedly abducted less than 24 hours after Governor Wike announced the dissolution of the Governing Council of Tertiary Institutions, including Ignatius Ajuru University.
However, the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Chris Ezike said on radio: “We are carrying out thorough investigation into the kidnap issue. We don’t want to bring out what is a family matter into the public domain. You can be sure we are on top of it.”