Saturday, August 15, 2020 3:32 pm
The Senate of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, has rejected the removal of Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe as Vice Chancellor of the institution by the Governing Council.
At an emergency meeting held yesterday by 88 members and anchored by a former Dean of the Faculty of Law, Prof. Chioma Ago, the institution’s Senate,according to The Guardian report, said the removal of Ogundipe was in contravention of UNILAG’s regulation, “as the Council removed the VC without giving him the opportunity to defend himself. They also kicked against the appointment of Prof. Omololu Soyombo as Acting Vice Chancellor of the institution.
In the same vein, the academic and non-academic unions of the university, as contained in the same report, “have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to dissolve the governing council of the institution.”
They also rejected the appointment of an acting vice chancellor, saying, there’s no room for any “surrogate VC”.
The report has it further: “They said that by virtue of the UNILAG Act, as well as laws and practice of other universities not only in Nigeria but also in other civilised climes, a principal officer could not just be removed on flimsy excuses without regard to laws.
The unions subsequently declared Ogundipe’s sack illegal on the ground that there was no notification to the vice chancellor concerning the allegations against him, no investigation panel set up to investigate the allegations in line with the university’s Act, lack of fair-hearing, no formal report from any investigative committee and no consideration of report of an investigative committee since none was set up as provided in the law.
However, the embattled vice chancellor may have headed for the court over his removal. Ogundipe, according to sources, has briefed a leading constitutional lawyer to challenge his purported removal from office and the appointment of Soyombo as an acting VC.
He claimed that the Council breached all known rules of natural justice and Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution in purportedly removing him as VC.
MEANWHILE, a former Dean of Social Sciences in the university, Lai Olurode, has appealed for calm and patience from all concerned to avert further chaos and imbroglio.
Olurode said that since an acting vice chancellor had been appointed, the university community should accept him and move on in the interest of peace.
He said: “The present situation in our university should not be allowed to further degenerate. We craved and agitated for university autonomy. Now that we have it, we must not throw the bad water with the baby. We must avoid further degeneration of the present conundrum.””