Orders fresh process
By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos State Governor and the Visitor to the Lagos State University (LASU), Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, has ordered the dissolution of the institution’s governing council in line with the recommendations in the report of the Special Visitation Panel on the appointment of the 9th Vice-Chancellor.
Commissioner for the Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, announced the governor’s directive in a statement released on Friday, May 21, 2021.
According to Omotoso, “After consideration of the report of the Special Visitation Panel and by the powers conferred on him by the Lagos State University Law, Cap L69 volume 7, Laws of Lagos State, 2015 (as amended), hereby adopts the recommendations and directs as follows: The immediate dissolution of the Lagos State University Governing Council and the removal of the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council for flagrant violations of the extant laws and regulations of the University guiding the appointment of a Vice-Chancellor.
“Cancellation of the second failed exercise to appoint the 9th Substantive Vice-Chancellor as a result of the flagrant contravention of extant laws, breach of due process, failure and total disregard to follow its own laid down criteria guiding the process for the appointment of a 9th Vice-Chancellor as publicly advertised.
“In due course, a new Governing Council for the Lagos State University will be constituted. The reconstituted Council shall conduct a new process for the appointment of the 9th Vice-Chancellor.
“Members of the Joint Council and the Senate Committee who participated in the two failed exercises of 2020 and 2021 to appoint a 9th Vice-Chancellor are exempted from further participation in the new exercise for the appointment of the Vice-Chancellor. The Acting Vice-Chancellor and Management of the University are hereby directed to elect new council members from the Senate.
“The Registrar and Secretary to Council is to proceed on leave with immediate effect till the end of the process for the appointment of the Vice-Chancellor, having failed to advise the Joint Council and Senate Committee against taking wrong decisions, which were against the provision of the law during the two failed exercises of 2020 and 2021. An Acting Registrar will superintend over the new exercise.
“The Acting Vice-Chancellor is to forward to the Governor/Visitor through the Surrogate Council (Special Adviser on Education) the list of all the Deputy Registrars of Lagos State University for the purpose of appointing an Acting Registrar for the University.
“The Governor/Visitor following the recommendation of the Special Visitation Panel shall be setting up a full Visitation Panel for Lagos State University immediately.”
Recall that Governor Sanwo-Olu, had on May 17, expressed commitment to fully implement the recommendations of the visitation panel constituted by the state government to look into the issues surrounding the appointment of the 9th Vice-chancellor of the Lagos State University, LASU, Ojo.
Sanwo-Olu gave the assurance, last Monday, at the presentation of the report by the panel, led by its chairman Prof. Bamitele Omole, former Vice-Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University, and Pro Chancellor, Ekiti State University, held at Lagos House, Alausa, Ikeja.
The panel was constituted in accordance with the provisions of Section 23 of the Lagos State University Law, Chapter L 69, Volume 7, Laws of Lagos State, 2015, with given clear terms of reference to guide its assignment within the ambit of the law and the subject matter, which include: To look at the remote and the immediate causes for the impasse into the selection process and procedures for the appointment of the 9th Vice-Chancellor, to review, in the public interest, the relevance or otherwise of the deluge of petitions against the first and second processes for the appointment.
To examine if the extant laws of the university and other relevant guidelines were followed in the process for the appointment, to review and advise, on all other relevant matters in respect of the process adopted so far, and to make other recommendations for the smooth running of the university.
To ensure transparency, the constitution of the visitation panel and request for submission of memoranda by the public was immediately published in at least three major national newspapers and major television stations commercials to create public awareness and give equal opportunity to all.”
The governor, while receiving the report, said: “Let me assure you and the general public that the report of this panel will be well utilized while its recommendations will be fully implemented in the appointment of the 9th Vice-Chancellor of LASU because we are confident that the outcome of this panel’s report will make the appointment of the next Vice-Chancellor a seamless exercise for the State Government.
He said: “This effort is geared towards ensuring that there is equality, fairness, transparency, openness and level playing ground for all in the process of selection and to ensure that the best and the most qualified person that would drive the vision for the establishment of the University by its founding fathers emerges at the end of the process that will be adjudged as most transparent.”