June 25, 2024

Central News

at the center of it

Tension as UNIZIK sacks 4 dons, suspends, rusticates 10 others

TENSION is mounting at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, where a panel has recommended the dismissal, suspension, and expulsion of more than 14 individuals (both staff and students) for various offences.
The implicated individuals comprise a priest and three other lecturers, with students facing expulsion for offences like “aiding and abetting.”
Dr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, UNIZIK vice-chancellor’s special adviser for public relations and special duties, issued a statement on the matter in Awka on Sunday, September 24.
Recall that the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Charles Esimone, has been grappling with a major challenge related to sexual harassment, extortion, and various transgressions within the university.
Only last week, the told a select group of journalists action was being taken on various challenges bedeviling harmonious relations in the academic community.
Students protest
Yesterday, according to Dr. Ojukwu, three lecturers were accused of extorting funds from students who successfully completed their courses, and employing fellow students to carry out these malevolent acts. Another is said to be involved in a sex scandal.
Exactly one month ago on August 24, 2023 some students of university staged a protest around the school over alleged sexual harassment and intimidation in the institution.
The aggrieved students, mainly females, had called on the vice-chancellor to release the Prof. Obi Oguejiofor panel report which indicted some members of staff.
They had also petitioned the Federal Government to intervene to protect them against incessant sexual harassment which they claimed had been rocking the school in recent times.
Protesters allege sexual harassment, others
One of the students, who gave her name simply as Ugonna, at that time said, “The vice-chancellor set up the Prof. Obi Oguejiofor panel to look into cases of sexual harassment when he assumed office, but before then, other panels had been set up that tried and equally indicted the culprits, yet, nothing was done.
“Why are they not being punished or sacked? Why is the V-C sitting on and hiding the Oguejiofor panel report? Even the married women among us are not free from harassment,” she had claimed.
In the interview he gave last week, Prof. Esomone had insisted that the university management was being careful not to take any disciplinary actions that could be upturned in court, on account of improper investigation.
Obviously, by today’s turn of events, the university administration has satisfied itself that justice has been served.