A group, The Mediators Forum, has condemned news reports calling for the removal of the Vice Chancellor, Federal University Lokoja (FUL), Prof. Olayemi Akinwumi.
In a statement issued in Lokoja on Thursday, the Secretary of the Group, Mr. Samuel Obajemu, said the promoters of the call for Akinwumi’s sack are not sincere.
The group argued that the claims about astronomical increase in tuition fees in the university are unfounded as the institution is yet to make any official pronouncement in that regard.
While describing the calls as reckless, Obajemu stated that the group can confirmed authoritatively that the FUL senate is yet to sit and take decision on the issue, adding that with the recent directive from Federal Government, all higher institutions of learning will definitely introduce increased tuition fees.
The group, founded in 2015 with a mission to advocate for and promote equity, fairness, justice and good governance, described Akinwumi as a blessing to the university and Kogi state going his landmark achievements in just two years.
He argued that from the group’s findings, no single protest took place in Lokoja as widely reported and wondered why some persons will hide behind the media to promote falsehood.
He also queried the motive behind the “scandalous reports”, asking why same people did not call for the sack of the Vice Chancellor of state-owned Prince Abubakar Audu University (PAAU), Anyigba, when the management increased tuition fees.
“We are proud of the achievements of Prof. Olayemi Akinwumi in just two years of his stewardship as the Vice Chancellor of Federal University Lokoja.
“Within the last two years, he has recorded more achievements that any of his predecessors. In terms of upgrading academic standards, infrastructural development and introduction of more programmes, Prof Akinwumi has moved the institution to an enviable height.
“Under his watch, Federal University Lokoja has introduced the college of medicine and other in-demand academic programmes. Nursing, engineering and medical laboratory science will commence next session.
“It is imperative that we interrogate sponsors of the reports calling for Prof. Akinwumi’s sack. As we speak, other universities established same time as Federal University Lokoja have announced increment in tuition fees. It is a national issue that should not be localised. This is why we believe their calls for Akinwumi’s sack is insincere and ill motivated,” he said.
The Mediators Forum added that cutting off the head is not the remedy for headaches.
“If at all such increment have been formalised, the remedy is not sack the Vice Chancellor but appeal to the management of the university to consider the masses with a minimal increase,” he added.
The group called on Akinwumi to remain focused on creating enabling environment for students to learn and staff to work efficiently.