As Institution counters falsehood by detractors
No government, organisation or individual makes headway in atmosphere of haziness, ‘visionlessness’ and ambiguity. Success is a direct result of calculation, application of mathematical exactitude in any conceptualized efforts. Indeed that has been the characteristic hallmark of the institution called Lagos State University (LASU) under the leadership of Prof. Olanrewaju Adigun Fagbohun (SAN, NPOM). CYRIACUS NNAJI writes.
Lagos State University (LASU) in the last five years has undergone several transformations both in infrastructural development and academic pursuit. This unapologetic growth momentum as a ripple effect of astuteness of its management has also attracted investors and international grants to the university.
Partners across the globe cause stampedes in a bid to be part of the success story for which the institution is associated. About two months ago Lasu won three international grants to pursue research in various fields of academic endeavours across the faculties of the university. Financial institutions, governments, individuals have entered into one partnership or the other with institution with objective of becoming partners in progress of an institution that upholds transparency.
Investors look for where there is transparency, accountability, and vision.
Prof. Fagbohu has shown leadership, transparency and accountability. He ensured peace on the campus, not by physical brute, but showing both academic, non-academic and students that they are all partners in progress. The students have won several honours nationally and internationally due mainly to uninterrupted academic calendar as a result of the peace on campus and sound academics as lecturers impacting the best in the students that have become world class students.
The school has record of zero tolerance to corruption and that was the crux of the recent falsehood traded by a news platform to malign the institution’s name.
No wonder LASU management has made arrangements to take legal action against the news platform Premium Times over what the institution called Latest falsehood against New Governing Council Chairman, Prof. Adebayo Ninalowo.
According to a press statement by the Coordinator, Centre for Information, Press and Public Relations (CIPPR) Lagos State University, Ademola Adekoya, the university management received with absolute dismay the publication titled “Sanwo-Olu Reappoints Man Involved in Pension Scandal as LASU Pro-Chancellor”, which has publication date of Monday, 3rd August, 2020.
The statement read “The University Management received the publication of Premium Times titled: “Sanwo-Olu Reappoints Man Involved in Pension Scandal as LASU Pro-Chancellor” dated Monday, 3rd August, 2020 with absolute dismay.”
The statement added that the said publication accused the newly reappointed Governing Council Chairman, Prof. Adebayo Ninalowo and the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, SAN, NPOM, of diverting N198million staff pension fund to buy luxury cars.
It further disclosed that on 14th April, 2019, Premium Times published this same material about the Pro-Chancellor and the Vice Chancellor accusing them of diverting the amount in question to buy luxury Vehicles.
According to the statement, the University Management then clarified the malicious publication by stating that the money was not taken from the Contributory Pension Funds but, from the provisions regularly made to meet past services obligations. The fund was utilised to meet the 2018 Accreditation exercise.
It also maintained that the cars referred to as luxury cars were mere Toyota Corolla vehicles. “This clarification was made on 26th April, 2019, where the University further opened up relevant records of the institution to an array of members of the institution of Civil Society Organisations (CSO) which includes; Centre for Anti – Corruption and Open Leadership (CACOL), led by Mr. Debo Adeniran; Initiative for Leadership and Economic Watch (ILEWN), led by Com. Agbonkpolor Splendor; the Civil Society Group for Good Governance (CSGGG); led by Com. Ogakwu Dominic; Centre for Rights and Grass-root Initiative (CPPNI), led by Com. Nelson Ekujumi and Voters Awareness, led by Bar. Wale Ogunnade, who came on a fact finding visit to the University over allegations of mismanagement of funds and other issues leveled against the institution’s authorities in a series of publications by the same media organization (Premium Times).
The statement averred that after the fact finding exercise the various CSO all left satisfied, adding that the same allegation was also investigated by ICPC and found to be spurious.
It also read “The use of the amount from the University’s provisions for past services obligations had the approval of the Governing Council of the University and the concurrence of the State Government at the time. It is important to mention that the State Government has since refunded the said funds to the University.”
The institution maintained that it is apparent some disgruntled elements were colluding with Premium Times to malign the image of the world class university. “It is apparent that some disgruntled individuals are colluding with this media platform to continuously malign the image of the University and that of the Chairman, Governing Council,” the statement disclosed.
Against this background, and considering the persistent mischief by the news platform against the University, the statement stated that the Management of Lagos State University has duly taken steps to brief the lawyers of the University.