Despite N5bn Fraud allegation, Buhari reinstates Ogundipe As UNILAG VC

Despite alleged financial misdeed and ongoing investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the reinstatement of Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe as Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos.

A retired professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, Boniface Oye-Adeniran, had asked the EFCC to investigate Ogundipe, Acting VC, Prof Folashade Ogunshola; Bursar of the university, Mr Lekan Lawal; and Director of Procurement of the institution, Dr James Akamu.

Oye-Adeniran in a petition to the anti-graft agency accused Ogundipe and his management team of awarding contracts amounting to N5bn without the approval of the governing council of the institution, awarding contracts beyond his N2.5m approval limit and breaching the Public Procurement Act between 2017 and 2020.

In a letter dated November 2, 2020 to the Acting VC of the institution, EFCC confirmed that it had already commenced an investigation into the activities of the suspended VC and others.

But President Buhari in a statement on Wednesday by spokesperson for the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, announced the reinstatement of Ogundipe, who was suspended in August.

The President also dissolved the Governing Council of the university, formerly chaired by Wale Babalakin.

The statement reads, “The Vice Chancellor was not granted an opportunity to defend himself on the allegations upon which his removal was based. He should accordingly be reinstated.

”All allegations made against the Vice Chancellor and the management of the university before and after the constitution of the Special Visitation Panel should be referred to regular visitation panel for thorough investigation and necessary recommendations.

”The process adopted by the council in the appointment of Prof Omololu Soyombo as Acting Vice Chancellor of the university was inconsistent with the provisions of the law relating to the appointment of an Acting Vice Chancellor.”