THE Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Universities in Nigeria (CVC) has advised the Governing Council of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), to take a step back and follow due process in the removal of Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, the university’s Vice-Chancellor.
Yakubu Ochefu, the Secretary-General of the CVC, said this during an interview with Voice of Nigeria (VON) on the purported removal of Ogundipe as the Vice-Chancellor of UNILAG on Wednesday.
“We believe the government is also not happy about this, as CVC we advise the Council members to take a step back and allow the process of removing the Vice-Chancellor as established by the law to take its course,” Ochefu said.
He stated that the law establishing universities confers on the governing council the power to hire and fire a Vice-Chancellor but not in disrespect to due process.
” The challenge we have here with the particular action is that the university community is saying that the council did not follow due process and indeed the communication from the embattled Vice-Chancellor is clear and it is to that effect,” Ochefu said.
The CVC Secretary General added that like the selection process where a committee is set up and recommendations are made to the council before its decision, the process of removal is similar.
“It is very clear, just like the process of selection of a Vice-Chancellor, you have a selection committee and they will advertise the job and interview the applicants and make a recommendation to the council,” he said.
“The council will appoint one person out of the three applicants, in the procedure of removing a Vice Chancellor, you also have to set up a joint council Senate Committee that will charge the VC, where he will be given the opportunity to defend himself and then from there, the submission will be presented to the council and they will now take the decision.”
The Secretary further noted that the embattled VC was not given an opportunity to defend that allegations levied against him by the council.
“What the university community is saying in UNILAG is that this process was not followed, a committee was set up, charging the Vice-Chancellor of a number of issues, but he was not given an opportunity to defend himself and we believe that here the law has not been properly adhered to,” he noted.
The removal of Ogundipe created an uproar in the UNILAG community as Unions in the university on Thursday gathered in large numbers to and held a protest against the council’s action.
The protesting Unions drummed and sang songs of support for Ogundipe who has been sacked by the council of the school.