The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has condemned sexual harassment of students by lecturers in universities.
Following the released video report by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) that implicated university teachers in Lagos and Ghana on Monday, the union described sexual harassment as unethical and abuse of power.
ASUU UNILAG Chairman, Dele Ashiru called for thorough investigation and appropriate sanction for lecturers indicted in the alleged sex-for-grades-scandal in order to sanitise the university system.
In a press release made available to EduCeleb.com in Lagos on Tuesday, 8th October, Ashiru said “as a union, we are against all unethical practices among colleagues, including sexual harassment and even abuse.”
“The development is very disturbing and unfortunate. We have appealed to colleagues to understand that as lecturers, we stand in ‘loco parentis’ (in the place of a parent) to these students and must not be perceived in any way of not being protective.
“We condemn this act of shame in its entirety and want the matter to be thoroughly investigated and appropriate sanction carried out on all those found culpable.”
On his part, Chimdi Maduagwu, a professor of English in UNILAG, said there is need for a social reorientation of the lecturers and others.
According to him, it is about social scrutiny, urging for enforcement of self-discipline, especially among the academic staff.
“There must be a way to look into and touch these things and water them down.
“Some of us tend to be wielding so much powers in the positions we find ourselves that we lose control even when there is absolutely need to draw the lines.
“An average lecturer could be so powerful that he sees himself as having all the powers to fail or award grades at his whims and caprices.
“I believe that quality assurance can take adequate charge of some of these ugly trends.”
EduCeleb.com recalls that the video had led to the suspension of Boniface Igbeneghu, a French lecturer at UNILAG just as the University management had promised to launch investigations into the involvement of any other lecturer implicated.