Yetunde Oladejo, Osogbo
Concerned members of Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU) of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife branch has described the statement credited to their chairman, Dr. Celeb Aborisade, on the appointment of a new Vice Chancellor for the university, as inaccurate.
Addressing a press conference at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Correspondents’ Chapel, Osogbo on Tuesday, a lecturer at the department of Mathematics, Prof. Adegbola Peter Akinola who was accompanied by some other academics of the university stressed that the comment by the chairman was false and self- seeking.
According to the concerned ASUU members, the chairman was reported to have said that the process which led to the announcement of the 6th June of a particular candidate as the new Vice Chancellor was free, fair and transparent, and questioned why the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) and the Non Academic Staff Union (NASU) are faulting the process and procedure of the new VC.
They however denied the statement saying that the chairman had no authority to issue the kind of statement saying that the process of the selection was fraught with at least two fundamental irregularities which made it utterly unfair and decidedly skewed against all the contestants except one person.
The concerned ASUU members recalled that the selection and appointment process is at present a subject of litigation before the Federal High Court, Osogbo, which had served all the necessary processes on the parties particularly the university’s council to hold on pending the determination of the matter on notice concerning complaints of improper process and partiality brought by SSANU and NASU of the University.
Their words: “It is in this light that one would have expected some reticence from an ASUU leader in OAU to refrain from saying anything prejudicial to the matter before the court. By jumping the gun therefore to issue an unapproved statement to the press purporting to represent the union in OAU, the ASUU-OAU chairman has further shown the high level of impunity which he and his sponsors have displayed in the university since the last five years or thereabout.
” Our position is that there is no direct role assigned to the ASUU in the appointment of a VC and that should be a sufficient statement than for the chairman of ASUU to go further to say that those who have found fault with the process have no right to complain and to cry foul.
“We mince no words in saying that if the process for the selection of a new VC is free, fair and transparent, we will have no problem with whoever emerges.”