Four days after the announcement of a four-day program to mark its 51st call, the University of Lagos (UNILAG) suspended the events, scheduled to start on 9 March.
A circular published on the institution’s website, signed by the institution’s secretary, Oladejo Azeez, who announced the cancellation, gave no reason.
But a memo leaked to the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC) and signed by the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Education, Sonny Ochono, noted that the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the University’s Board of Directors, Dr. Wale Babalakin, had informed Education Minister Adamu Adamu in a letter dated March 2 that the program had not been approved by his council.
The letter entitled: “Re: Invitation to the 2019 Convocation Ceremony of the University of Lagos” says:
“The honorable minister’s attention was drawn to the attached copy of the letter dated March 2, 2020 from the Pro-Chancellor and President of the Council, Dr. B.O. Babalakin in the sense that the 2019 convening ceremonies were not approved by the Governing Council, in accordance with the laws of the University.
“Therefore, I ask that you kindly advise the Vice Chancellor to suspend the summons and ensure full compliance with due process.”
On Wednesday, the 9jatoday sought out UNILAG Vice Chancellor Prof. Toyin Ogundipe, and deputy registrar, information and protocol, Ms. Taiwo Oloyede, to confirm rumors of the call being postponed, but received no response.
However, when this reporter called her on Thursday, she confirmed the postponement and said the University would release its official statement on Thursday night.
“I didn’t respond to your message because I didn’t want to. The summons was postponed. We will send an official statement tonight, ”she said.
The direction of Prof. Ogundipe and the Governing Council are at odds with the functioning of the university.
Last year, the Ministry of Education and the Chamber of Deputies had to reconcile both parties.