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UNILAG: Due process was followed in Ogundipe’s removal as VC – Pro Chancellor, Wale Babalakin says

Wale Babalakin, pro-chancellor of the University of Lagos, has said that due process was followed in the removal of the former Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe and that anyone who is against it must have been benefitting from the alleged acts of corruption’ perpetrated during Ogundipe’s administration.

Professor Ogundipe who was appointed as the Vice-Chancellor of the University in November 2017, was removed from office at a meeting of the governing council of the university, held at the National Universities Commission (NUC) in Abuja, on Wednesday, August 12.

Ogundipe and some members of staff of the University have faulted the process of his removal. saying due process wasn’t followed. Ogundipe has since gone to court to challenge his removal.

However, speaking to newsmen at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, on Friday, August 14, Babalakin said the “focal minority” opposed to Ogundipe’s removal benefitted from the alleged corruption under him.

“The confusion is that most people don’t how governing council operates. There was full compliance of the law in the removal of Prof Ogundipe.

The issue has been lingering on for a long time. Series of attempt were made to reconcile but the VC was not forthcoming… a focal minority, who are benefiting from the corruption in UNILAG which has become cultural.

Due process was followed in the removal of Ogundipe. After the council committee indicted the VC, he wrote his defence in May and spoke for one hour. His sack was done in accordance with UNILAG law.

The votes were counted with each council members’ comments. Everyone voted, they didn’t just vote but they made comments and I read out all the comments.

Go and read the law, what the law said is that when a Vice Chancellor is removed and you have a complaint, you will write an appeal to the visitor. He cannot on his own, declare that he has not been removed as Ogundipe has done. He cannot on his own confront his employers. In law, he has resigned because if you challenge your employer and you are still in his employment, you have actually left.

“The weakness of Ogundipe is that his legal advisers have not done a very thorough job. There is no stalemate and there is no chaos in the university because the law would take its course. It is not in the place of the removed VC to say he has not been removed. He cannot be a judge in his own court.

“He cannot on his own declare that he has not been removed. He cannot on his own decide to confront his employer.”

Babalakin accused Ogundipe of looting the treasury of the institution during his administration as Vice-Chancellor.

“Professor Ogundipe has been looting the university and looting it recklessly, that’s the plain truth that we should not hide. There is misappropriation and there is direct looting of the university. All attempts were made to put an end to this.

The former VC spent N49 million renovating his house. Under the process, this has to be done with approval from the council, he sought no approval. To cover-up, he gave the bursar N41 million to renovate his official residence. The official residence of the bursar can be built for N41 million from scratch, this was what was spent on renovation.”

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