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University of Ibadan Senate takes major step to resolving crisis

The crisis rocking the election of who become the next Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan may soon be over as all parties made move to allow peace to reign.

Over 300 members of Senate of the citadel of learning met physically on Thursday for more than three hours in a bid to resolving the lingering crisis.

Daily Mail learnt that the meeting had one of the largest attendance in the history of the university.

It was gathered that the large turnout was not unconnected with the importance and nature of the issues discussed.

The Vice Chancellor, Prof Abel Idowu Olayinka told the Senate at the start of the meeting to consider it as a family gathering with the sole aim of resolving matters.

“what matters most is that we speak frankly to the issues and remain family members after resolving it. We must eschew bitterness. Even if you have been falsely accused, please put the hurt aside for the time being”, Prof. Olayinka said.

The special meeting of Senate, it was learnt, was convened at the instance of the University of Ibadan Pro Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council, Nde Joshua Mutka Waklek who directed Senate to examine the petitions filed by two Professors who had lost out in the election of members to the Senate-Council Joint VC Selection Committee.

The two aggrieved professors, Prof Ademola Dasylva and Prof A. Fasanmade had challenged the process and outcomes of the election.

In their petitions, they had accused the Technical Committee on e-Voting of bias, and manipulation of the process. In his second petition, Prof Dasylva as well accused the Vice Chancellor of being biased in favour of a contestant.

Four Professors (Francis Offor, Deji Omole, Abiodun Ayodele and Ayodeji Ogunjuyigbe and a Deputy Registrar (Mrs Morenike Afolabi) who were implicated in the petitions had responded to the allegations showing proofs of their innocence, and defended the integrity of the election.

The Senate meeting debated all the allegations raised in the two petitions just as the responses presented by the defendants.

Speaking at the end of the meeting, Prof. Oyebamiji Babalola described the meeting as peaceful, transparent and well-conducted in a manner that depicts the ingenuity of UI Senate members”.

Also, Prof Wole Olatokun of the African Regional Centre for Information Science, said members were given opportunity to freely express their minds on all issues about the election petitions brought before Senate, adding that the proceedings were transparently and dispassionately handled from start to finish”.

Although members refused to divulge the outcome of the meeting, they noted that it was not just well-attended, it was characterised by civility and frankness.

Another member of Senate present at the meeting, Professor of Sociology, Lanre Olutayo described the meeting as characterised by transparency, frankness and openness. In his words, the meeting was “very honest and transparent. I am proud to be privileged to be a member of UI senate”.

The significance of the Senate meeting was underscored by Prof Ayo Ojebode who said “the petitioners exercised their rights to air their grievances though their petitions should have been differently routed. The accused persons also did an excellent job, with incontrovertible proofs. I think we just had an intellectually stimulating Senate meeting. What is more important, though, is that Senate today spoke with one voice. A divided Senate is a potential disaster; we are lucky to have one strong Senate of the University of Ibadan”

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