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JUST IN: FG intervenes on UNILAG crisis, directs Babalakin, Vice-chancellor to vacate office

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

As part of effort to end the face-off that is rocking University of Lagos (UNILAG), Yaba, the Federal Government has directed the institution’s Pro-Chancellor/Chairman of Council, Dr. Wale Babalakin and the embattled Vice-Chancellor, Prof.Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, to vacate office pending outcome of ongoing investigation.

The directives came hours after President Muhammadu Buhari constituted a special visitation panel to look into the ongoing crisis rocking the institution.

According to the government, the six-man panel would be chaired by Prof. Tukur Sa’ad, and that the panel has within two weeks to submit report on the face-off between Babalakin and Ogundipe.

Other members of the special panel were: Prof. Ikenna Oyindo, Victor Onuoja, Ekanem Braide, Prof. Adamu Usman, Jimoh Bankole while Grace Ekanem was appointed as the panel secretary.

It would be recalled that the face-off rocking the institution started on August 12 when Babalakin-led governing council sacked Ogundipe as Vice-Chancellor over alleged financial misappropriation and misconduct and was replaced with Omololu Soyombo.

Announcing the directives through a statement signed Federal Ministry of Education spokesman, Ben Goong on Friday, the government explained that recusing themselves from official duties would aid the special visitation panel set up by the President to unravel reasons for the crisis.

“Government also directs the Senate of the University of Lagos to immediately convene to nominate an acting Vice-Chancellor from amongst its members for confirmation by the Governing Council,” the statement added.

As gathered, the new directives could affect the acting vice-chancellor, Soyombo, who resumed office barely seven days to the office.

According to the statement, the Presidential Panel was expected to determine whether the required steps were taken by the Council in sacking Ogundipe.

Also, the panel was expected to make appropriate recommendations including sanctions for all those found culpable during an investigation which was expected to commence August 27th after Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, inaugurates the panel 24 hours before.

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