Barring a last minute change of strategy, Chairman of the Governing Council of the University of Lagos, Akoka, Dr Wale Babalakin, will today announce the removal of the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe.
Cameras are already stationed at the fifth floor of the National Universities Commission’s Secretariat in Abuja, venue of the meeting, where Babalakin is billed to make the announcement.
The university had fixed an emergency meeting of the council to hold from Wednesday, August 12 to Friday, August 14 at Fraiser Suites, a hotel located at Central Business District, Abuja, but had to opt for the NUC headquarters located on Aguiyi Ironsi Way in Abuja after condemnation greeted the decision to hold a council meeting outside the university community in Lagos.
Other officials, who could not make it down to Abuja to participate physically, joined the meeting via the Internet.
According to the notice of the meeting seen by SaharaReporters, items on the agenda include the advertisement for needs assessment intervention fund, the university’s COVID-19 action plan, approval of the university’s 2020 budget estimates, outstanding reports of council sub-committees, pending matters, among others.
SaharaReporters gathered that shortly after the commencement of the meeting earlier today, Babalakin appealed to members in attendance to jettison the first four items on the agenda to move straight to the fifth one.
The fifth agenda was the approval of the investigative reports set up by the council to audit the university’s expenditure in about 18 months.
One of the officials at the meeting told SaharaReporters that, “The Vice Chancellor, the Deputy Vice Chancellor and others were asked to leave the conference room for the debate of the report after others had insisted on taking the agenda one after the other as listed.
“As soon as we moved out, there were seven members left in the meeting and the Council Chairman asked them to vote via WhatsApp for the removal of the VC. It was an ambush.”
SaharaReporters further gathered that the council members had concluded voting already and have gone on break to reconvene by 5:00pm for announcement of an Acting Vice Chancellor by Babalakin.
A source hinted, however, that a top figure in the Presidency on whose intervention the meeting was moved to 5:00pm is currently appealing to the council to shelve the idea of removing Prof Ogundipe as VC of UNILAG.