Acting UNILAG VC resigns as FG sack Babalakin, Ogundipe

As Buhari set up panel to resolve the crisis

The Acting Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Prof Omololu Soyombo, has stepped down following the Federal Government’s directives that the University of Lagos Senate nominates an acting Vice-Chancellor.

The federal government had directed the Pro-Chancellor/Chairman of Council, University of Lagos, Wale Babalakin and the sacked Vice Chancellor, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe to step aside from their official duties pending the outcome of a Special Visitation Panel set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to resolve the crisis rocking the institution.

Read Also: UNILAG Council appoints Omololu Soyombo as acting Vice-Chancellor

Soyombo, in a statement, said he’s stepping down with immediate effect urging staff and students to continue to go about their lawful activities in a peaceful manner.

“The news of the setting up of a Special Visitation Panel to the University of Lagos by the Federal Government was received in the evening of Friday, 21st August 2020. The government also directed the University Senate to nominate an Acting Vice-Chancellor for the University, for confirmation by the Governing Council. With this, I am stepping down, with immediate effect, as Acting Vice-Chancellor of the University,” he said.

Soyombo urged all staff and students of the institution to continue to go about their lawful activities in a peaceful manner.

“I wish to express my sincere appreciation to all members of staff and our dear students, the staff unions, alumni and the general public for their wonderful support and cooperation in the past ten days since my appointment as Acting Vice-Chancellor of the University on 12th August 2020.

“As I noted in my address to a cross-section of staff on 19th August 2020, I accepted the offer to serve as a call to service, with the objective of restoring peace and stability in the university.

“It is my prayer that the peace and stability that we so much need and desire at this time be restored very quickly, so that the University of Lagos can continue to march on as the University of First Choice and the Nation’s Pride,” he concluded.

The spokesman of the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, had in a statement said the set up presidential panel comprising of Prof. Tukur Sa’ad, as Chairman; and the members are Victor Onuoha; Prof. Ikenna Oyindo; Prof. Ekanem Braide; Prof. Adamu K. Usman; Chief Jimoh Bankole; and Grace Ekanem, who is the Secretary has within two weeks to submit reports on its findings.

The establishment of the Visitation Panel was announced on the day the embattled Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Ogundipe withdrew from the National Industrial Court where he had gone to challenge his controversial removal by the Governing Council of the university.

Other decisions taken by the President are that: “The Pro-Chancellor, Dr Wale Babalakin, SAN and the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, have been suspended from office as they are both to recuse themselves from performing their functions in office during the period of the visitation.

“The Senate is to convene urgently and appoint an Acting Vice-Chancellor for the university.”