KWASU Suspends Six Lecturers for Daring to form ASUU
The Management of Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete, has suspended six lecturers of the Institution over 'acts of gross misconduct'. This followed a report to the University Management that on Tuesday, October 28, 2015, the affected lecturers abused and harassed the Chief Safety Officer (CSO) of the University in the course of performing his lawful duty. The suspension is however not unconnected with the desire of some members of the university community to inaugurate a KWASU branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). (see Disquiet in KWASU over establishment of ASUU chapter)
A statement signed Director, Office of the University Relations, Dr. Isiaka Aliagan said the CSO, in an attempt to address a group of academic staff, including the suspended lecturers, found holding a meeting in the Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) Open Theatre without official approval or permission to use the facility, was harassed by the group.
He said further that “Using the VPA Open Theatre without official permission and harassing and abusing an officer of the University while performing his lawful duty were considered by the university management to be acts of gross misconduct which are not only inimical to the integrity of the University, but also undermined the authority of the University.
Thus, the University Management, having decided that by such act, the affected academic staff members have contravened the extant provisions of the Code of Conduct for Staff, approved their suspension from duty with immediate effect until further notice.
Also, it was also decided by the University Management that the matter be referred to the Senior Staff Disciplinary Committee before which the suspended academic staff will appear.
The affected academic staff members who have been served their letters of suspension have been directed to hand over all University property in their possession to their Heads of Departments or Provosts, while they have been barred from having access to the University campus, especially academic areas. In tune with the rules of the University, the management has directed that the suspended lecturers be placed on half salary pending the resolution of their matter.
The affected lecturers are Professor Innocent Okoye, Department of Mass Communication, College of Information and Communication Technology (ICT); Dr. Dauda Adeniran Adeshola, Department of Mathematics, College of Pure and Applied Sciences; and, Mr. Dairo Kunle Paul, Department of Bioscience and Bio-technology, College of Pure and Applied Sciences.
Others are Dr. Gafaru Olayiwola Olorisade, Department of Business Education, College of Education; Professor Christopher Odetunde, Department of Aeronautic and Astronautic Engineering, College of Engineering and Technology; and Dr. Ayotunde Emmanuel Alao, Department of Mass Communication, College of Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
It would be recalled that about 17 academic staff of KWASU, on August 13, met to formally inagurate protem officers of the KWASU branch of Academic Staff union of Universities (ASUU).The meeting was said to have been attended by 17 members of the academic community, including the Provost, College of Information and Communication Technology, KWASU, Prof. Innocent Okoye. During the meeting, protem officers for the new union were elected as follows: Dr. Dauda Adesola, Chairman; Dr. Shehu Salau, Secretary; Dr. Alao Ayotunde, Public Relations Officer; Mr Muhammed Danjuma, Treasurer; and Mr. Olayinka Olaogun, Assistant Secretary.
The university management, in its reaction to the meeting through a circular by KWASU Protocol Officer, Mrs. Hamidat Sulyman-Yusuf, on August 20, informed the university community that it was aware of a certain group of KWASU staff allegedly holding clandestine meetings in what it called odd venues in Malate and in what it regarded as 'in the name of cultism or combative unionism.'
The management said: "The university wishes to warn all concerned that this (the union/meeting) is illegal under KWASU rules and no nefarious clandestine group, no matter what name it disguised itself, will be recognised by the university.
"The university only recently attained five years of peaceful and purposeful academic calendar. An acceptable legal unionism for students, academic and non-academic staff will be ushered in within an open framework with active participation of management and all concerned.
"No amount of effort by the handful of 17 staff that met outside the campus and held a cultists' meeting to create chaos in KWASU will succeed. The Police, Office of Safety and other security agencies have been put on alert to monitor these nefarious individuals and each of the 17 staff or any other who might be misguided is hereby warned. "A time table will be published at the appropriate time for peaceful unionism. Some gangs are obviously sad about the peaceful nature of KWASU in the face of national difficulties and seek to cause disaffection with government. We must all ensure that they never succeed," it said.
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