26th November, 2015
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
All is not well with the affairs of Ignatius Ajuru University, Rumuolumini, Port Harcourt, southern Nigeria, as the sacked former Vice-Chancellor, Professor Rosamund-Green Osahagulu, has dragged Governor Nyesom Wike and the university’s authorities to court for wrongful termination of her appointment.
The new Vice-Chancellor of the university, Professor Joseph Kinanee, disclosed this during the inauguration of the new board of Governing Council of the university at the institution’s campus, Rumuolumini, said the former VC had dragged the university and the state to the Industrial Court in Yenagoa.
Professor Joseph Kinanee lamented that besides the court case instituted by the former VC, the Bursar of the institution had equally dragged the university to court and the two cases have injunctive orders barring the university from accessing the funds of the university in various banks.
The sack of former VC was contained in statement signed by Mr Kie Obumanu, Director of Media and Publicity in the office of the Secretary to the State Government, SSG.
Professor Osahagulu was ordered to proceed on compulsory leave and hand over to the Deputy Vice Chancellor. No reason was given for her sack.
The sack follwed her abduction by gunmen as she was leaving the campus of the Rivers Government-owned institution.
She was released six days later and was under investigation by the security agents over circumstances surrounding her alleged kidnap.
Two weeks after her release, the university management slammed a three-month suspension on her husband, Professor Joshua Osahagulu, for alleged conspiracy in the kidnap of his wife.
But the university branch of Academic Staff Union Universities, ASUU, kicked against the suspension of Prof. Joshua Osahagulu, describing it as “unfair and unjust” and called on the management to reverse the decision until a thorough investigation is carried out on the matter.
ASUU Chairman of the university, Dr. Ugochukwu Agey said the union is pissed with the way Prof. Joshua Osahagulu was hounded with suspension simply based on the statement he made over the abduction of his wife without thorough probe into the circumstances surrounding the abduction of his wife.
The ASUU Chairman had pointed out that the hasty action of the university’s management was capable of bringing the image of the Ivory Tower into disrepute and called on the Rivers state Governor, Nyesom Wike, who is the Visitor of the university to intervene as a matter of urgency.
Besides injunctive orders by various courts that have entangled the university, the Parents Teachers Association of Ignatius Ajuru University of Education Demonstration Secondary School, Ndele Campus have raised alarm over the incessant kidnapping cases at the school.
They made their concerns known to the Vice-Chancellor of IAUE Professor Joseph Kinanee when they visited him on Friday 13, November 2015.
Leader of the delegation and Chairman of PTA UDSS Ndele Chief Brantley Reuben Osuamkpe with his executive members feared that the secondary school was under siege by men of the underworld who were prying on innocent students.
He said that the students and staff were no longer safe and that two students had been kidnapped after the kidnap of a staff months back.
Chief Osuamkpe who remarked that although security was not the function of the PTA, they had gone ahead to provide interim measures like police patrol, employed the services of legionnaires to secure the institution and pleaded for more security presence as academic programme was declining with no more prep classes as well as drastic reduction of the school intake due to the security situation.
The PTA boss also appealed for reduction of the school fees recently increased and for a facelift of the school.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Joseph Kinanee who assured the team that management was not resting on ensuring that the children were safe, noted that letters had been written to the Police Commissioner to provide enough police presence with twenty four hours patrol team in the area.
The Vice-Chancellor who promised to ensure some structural improvement appealed for patience with the school fees hike which he stated was necessary as the school was now self financing.