The Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu has inaugurated in Abuja on Wednesday, 26 August 2020, a seven-member Presidential Special Visitation Panel to look into the crisis in the University of Lagos following the removal of its Vice-Chancellor, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe and the suspension of the Chairman of the University’s Governing Council, Dr Wale Babalakin and submit recommendations that would put the institution back on course.
The panel headed by Prof Tukur Sa’ad, on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari is expected to conclude its assignment and submit its report within two weeks.
Other members of the panel include Barrister Victor Onuohar, Professor Ikenna Onyido, Professor Ekanem Braids, Professor Adamu Usman, Jimoh Bankole and Barrister Grace Ekanem.
Adamu, at the inauguration, encouraged stakeholders in the university to fully cooperate with the panel and to allow it to work unhindered. According to him, members by the terms of reference of this panel are expected to view the report of the council sub-committee on review of the University of Lagos since May 2017 and make appropriate recommendations, after affording all those indicted an opportunity to defend themselves.
“They are to examine the steps taken by the council leading to the removal of the Vice-chancellor, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, and ascertain whether due process was followed as stipulated in the universities amendment act 2003, and the principle of fair hearing adhered to”.
“To determine whether the process (if any) leading to the appointment of the acting Vice-chancellor for the university was consistent with the provisions of the enabling Act”.
“To make appropriate recommendations, including sanctions for all those found culpable by the Special Visitation Team, on allegations contained in the report as well as other subsequent actions arising therefrom”.
“And make any recommendations that will assist the government to make decisions that will ensure peaceful, stable, and effective administration of the university,” he said.
Responding, the Chairman of the panel, Prof. Tukur Sa’ad, thanked the minister for finding the members of the committee worthy of carrying out the national assignment. He further promised that they will put in their best to ensure the resolution of the crisis rocking the university while calling on the university’s Governing Council as well as the University Senate to give them full cooperation in the course of discharging their duty.
The inauguration comes a few days after Senate members of the University of Lagos on Monday elected Professor Folasade Ogunsola as the acting Vice-Chancellor of the school.