UNN Crises: Alumni Sue Varsity's New Pro-Chancellor, Wike, Others

The Alumni Association of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, has  asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to set aside the suspension of the pro-chancellor of the institution, Dr. Emeka Enejere, by the Supervising Minister of Education, Mr. Nyesom Wike.

The association also asked the court to restrain Mr. Emmanuel Ukala (SAN) from further parading himself as the university’s Pro-Chancellor.

Joined in the suit obtained by The PUNCH on Monday are Wike, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke (SAN), the Governing Council of the university and Ukala.

Others are the National Universities Commission; UNN Registrar, Enejere and the university management.

The plaintiff, in Suit no: FHC/ABJ/CS/41/2014 by its counsel, Andrew Ameh and A. O. Oru and co, asked the court to determine whether or not in the light of Section 3, First Schedule of UNN Act, CAP U11, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2000 (as amended), it is only the President that could appoint or remove the pro-chancellor of the university.

The association wants the court to declare that by virtue of Section 6(2), First Schedule  of UNN Act, CAP U11, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, “the registrar of the university, acting in his capacity as secretary of the governing council, ought only to take instructions from the validly appointed/subsisting pro-chancellor in the person of Dr. Emeka Enejere in convening a meeting of the governing council.”

Other reliefs include an order of the court restraining the university administration headed by its vice-chancellor and registrar in his capacity as secretary of the governing council, whether by themselves, offices/officers/agents and or privies from recognising Ukala or another person in any manner whatsoever other than Enejere as the pro-chancellor of the university.

Members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities in UNN had since the removal of Enejere urged the Federal Government to reinstate him and remove the Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Bartho Okolo.

Several protests have been held to ensure that the government accedes to their request.

Also,the crisis greeting UNN governing council had recently taken another dimension with the suspension of the Nsukka branch chairman of ASUU, Dr. Ifeanyi Abada, and two other ASUU members for allegedly working against the interest of the union.

Suspended along with the chairman are the Financial Secretary, Mr. Tochukwu Omenma and Welfare Officer, Mrs. Christy Obikeguna, while Dr. Adibe Agbo, Jude Chukwu, Ifeoma Nzekwe and Mr. Onah were  elected as acting chairperson, secretary, financial secretary and welfare officer in that order.

In a resolution reached after its emergency congress at Nsukka and signed by the Acting Chairperson and Secretary of ASUU-UNN, Dr. Adibe Agbo, and Jude Chukwu respectively, the union said Abada was suspended from the executive committee for failing to treat the welfare of members as priority.

Source: Punch

Olusegun Fapohunda
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