The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), has rejected the shortlist of three Professors by the Governing Council of Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH) for the Rectorship position.
ASUP said that the action of the Chief Lateef Fagbemi-led Governing Council of the polytechnic violated the Federal Polytechnic Act, the advertorial placed in national dailies specifying that Chief Lecturers should apply for the job as well as an agreement signed with the Federal Government in 2009.
In a petition dated September 26 and signed by ASUP National President, Umaru Dutse, and SouthWest Zonal Coordinator, Adetunji Orun, addressed to the Council chairman, Chief Fagbemi, the union drew the attention of the Council to the fact that only chief lecturers from the polytechnic sector were qualified to occupy the office of Rector in any of the nation’s Polytechnics.
It reads: “For the avoidance of doubt, the advertisement clearly stated that only chief lectures of five years are qualified to apply. It is worth stating that there is no equivalent to chief lecturers outside the polytechnic sector’’.
The union urged the Governing Council not to consider of interview a Professor for the position of Rector as it was planned.
The letter titled: ‘’Protesting short listing of Professor for YABATECH Rector interview,’’ the national body of ASUP revealed that the YABATECH branch had been directed to resist any attempt to violate the advertorial made and the enabling law with respect to the position of Rector.
Addressing newsmen on the issue, ASUP Southwest zonal coordinator, Mr. Orun and chapter chairman, Prince Adeyemi Aromolaran, said the union would reject any Professor appointed as Rector for the institution, insisting that the process for the shortlist of candidates should be transparent.
In Orun’s words: ‘’We are telling the Federal Government and stakeholders about the anomaly. If the Governing Council goes ahead and appoint a Professor, we will resist the resumption of such person. The advert of July 2017 for position states the qualification clearly as chief lecturers’’.
The zonal coordinator disclosed that the short listing of the applicants were done by the Council Chairman, Chief Fagbemi, outgoing Rector, Dr. Margaret Ladipo, Registrar, Biekoroma Amapakabo and one other member without inputs of others.
He continued, ‘’We will not allow any Professor to resume here as YABATECH Rector. It is against the advert and the agreement signed with government. We learnt that one of the principal wants to impose her PhD supervisor on the College. Polytechnic chief lecturers are not inferior to our colleagues in the university,” he explained.
Aromolaran said the entire selection exercise was shrouded in secrecy and revealed that some qualified chief lecturers were not shortlisted. He added that with the inclusion of the three Professors, the Council had gone outside the content of the advert for the position.
He explained that with the backing of congress, any Professor appointed as Rector would not be allowed into the College. ‘’Let Council tell us the criteria used to shortlist the three Professors. We have more qualified chief lecturers in the Polytechnic system nationwide.’’
We gathered that 22 applicants were shortlisted for the plum job, 19 from the polytechnic system and three Professors from the university. The interview for the applicants was said to be ongoing at a hotel in Ogba, Ikeja.
The Director of Public Relations of YABATECH, Dr. Charles Oni, was not available when our Correspondent contacted him, while Council chairman, Chief Fagbemi did not respond to calls and text messages sent to his phone.