Ex Vice-Chancellor VC of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, did not commit any financial violation that warranted his removal from office, according to the report of the Special Visitation Panel to the University.
The Director of Press and Public Relations at the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben-Bem Goong, said Wednesday in Abuja that the report of the panel was sent to President Muhammadu Buhari, Visitor of the University.
The President, it said, overruled Ogundipe’s expulsion from office by the university’s Governing Council, headed by Dr. Wale Babalakin (SAN), disbanded the university’s Governing Council and restored the former Vice-Chancellor.
The statement said that Ogundipe’s dismissal did not meet the “due process” because he was not given the opportunity to defend himself against the allegations made against him.
The panel also faulted the process adopted by the Babalakin-led council in the appointment of Prof. Omololu Soyombo as Acting Vice Chancellor of the university, adding that the process was inconsistent with the provisions of the law on the appointment of an acting Vice Chancellor.
It recommended that all allegations levelled against Ogundipe and the management of the university before and after the constitution of the Special Visitation Panel should be referred to the regular Visitation Panel for thorough investigation and necessary recommendations.
“Mr. President, after careful review of the report, has approved all the recommendations of the Panel.
“Accordingly, Professor Ogundipe is hereby reinstated as the VC of UNILAG.
“The Governing Council of the University of Lagos, Chaired by Dr. B. O. Babalakin, is hereby dissolved.
“Mr. President hopes these steps will bring peace, stability, focus and direction to the university,” the statement said.
Also, the Chairman of UNILAG chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Dr. Dele Ashiru, has said the reinstatement of Prof. Ogundipe will ensure peace, progress and stability in the institution.
Speaking with The Nation on Wednesday, Ashiru described the decision of the Federal Government as a vindication of the union’s position on the “authoritarian and dictatorial tendencies of the Babalakin-led Governing Council”.
The union leader praised the Federal Government for upholding the truth, due process and saving the nation’s university system from undue dictatorship.
“It is our conviction that this decision by the Visitor to the university will enthrone peace, stability and progress in our varsity.
“We thank the Visitor, President Muhammadu Buhari, and the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, for enthroning the rule of law, due process and justice in UNILAG,” he said.