The chairperson of the federal government’s special Visitation Panel to probe the leadership crisis at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) has faulted the government’s decision to reinstate the embattled vice chancellor of the university, Oluwatoyin Ogundipe.
The Ministry of Education on Wednesday announced the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to reinstate Mr Ogundipe who was controversially sacked by the governing council of the university.
Tukur Saad, a professor of architecture at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, who was appointed to head the panel in August, in different correspondences to the Chief of Staff to the president, Ibrahim Gambari, and the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, cast doubts on the integrity of the report.
Expressing reservation about the decision to reinstate Mr Ogundipe, the panel’s chairperson, said “The recommendation that the VC should be reinstated was limited to the procedure of his termination. It did not mean he should be absolved of all wrong doing.”
He said the report of the panel was one-sided because majority of the members were biased towards Mr Ogundipe and the Terms of Reference (ToR) were also skewed against the estranged chairperson of the governing council, Wale Babalakin, who had since resigned from the position.
Mr Saad said although Mr Ogundipe, a professor, was wrongly removed, he was not given a clean bill of health as he was indicted in some wrongdoings, including contract splitting.
The panel chairperson also accused Mr Babalakin of “committing hara-kiri” by removing the VC and appointing another one, and by his decision to step down from his position when the crisis got messy.
Mr Saad said he was cajoled into signing the report with the understanding that the content would be subjected to review by the Chancellor of the University, the Shehu of Borno.
The panel chairperson said he agreed to sign the report to abort another stalemate and in order to save the government from embarrassment but regretted that he had now been “stabbed on the back” by people he trusted.
CREDIT: PREMIUM TIMES