BABALAKIN HALTED OUR CONVOCATION SAYS UNILAG VICE CHANCELLOR, TOYIN OGUNDIPE

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Akoka, Prof. Toyin Ogundipe, has faulted the claims by the Governing Council Chairman, Dr Wale Babalakin, that permission was not got for the convocation ceremonies.

He also denied claims that the nominees for the honorary doctorate degrees were not approved by the Senate.

Ogundipe said the National Universities Commission halted the event based on Babalakin’s complaint that the convocation was not authorised by the council.

There had been a conflict between the university management and the governing council, which eventually led to the suspension of the varsity’s convocation.

The pro-chancellor, in a statement, had blamed Ogundipe for not carrying the council along in the plan.

But the vice-chancellor, in a statement on Monday, said the claim was not a true reflection of the council meeting.

“Excerpt of the minutes of the January 21 and 22, 2020 are thus reproduced: ‘Council was informed that the 2019 convocation ceremonies have been scheduled between March 9 and 13, 2020. The chairman informed members that all matters on the convocation ceremonies shall be considered at the council meeting of January 22, 2020.

“Council received and considered CP. No 2019/20/3b, which contained the nominees for honorary doctorate degree at the 51st convocation ceremonies of the university and the proposed budget estimate’,” the statement added.

Ogundipe said the deliberation of the council on honorary doctorate nominees at the meeting was extensive, adding that Babalakin suggested the inclusion of late Dr Stella Adadevoh for a posthumous award, which was forwarded to the honours committee.

“It is pertinent to note that despite the special appeal by Senate following its emergency meeting of March 4, 2020, and entreaties by virtually all members of council at the council meeting of March 4, 2020 for the pro-chancellor to speak to the NUC and the ministry to persuade them to allow the convocation ceremonies to hold as planned, the pro-chancellor did not heed the pleas,” he added.

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