ASUU passes vote of confidence in AAU branch exco
Igbafen threatens to sue varsity for defamation
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Ambrose Alli University (AAU) Ekpoma, Edo State chapter, has passed a vote of implicit confidence in its chairperson and other executive members.
This is made known in a communiqué signed by the union’s chairperson, Dr. Monday Igbafen, and the secretary, Dr. Anthony Aizebioje-Coker, yesterday in Benin City.
A five-man committee has been constituted by the union to interface with the university management over the allegation against Igbafen.
AAU authorities had, in a statement recently, suspended Igbafen for alleged sexual harassment.
The university’s spokesman, Mr. Edward Aihevba, stated that the suspension followed the arraignment of Igbafen before the Senior Staff Disciplinary Committee (SSDC) on allegations of sexual harassment.
The congress equally resolved that it was convinced that the suspension was a fall-out of the union’s insistence on its principles and due process as well as its resolve to successfully prosecute the recent nationwide strike in the branch.
ASUU, which commended the chairperson for the struggle for better welfare of its members, resolved that the suspension was an aberration and an affront on the union.
It also vowed to continue to insist on due process, integrity and transparency in the running of the affairs of the university as enshrined in the ASUU constitution and code of conduct.
Meanwhile, Igbafen has given the university’s management 30 days to retract what he described as “defamatory materials” published in the university’s bulletin of February 13, 2019 or be ready for litigation.
The associate professor in the Department of Philosophy also alleged that the said publication was widely distributed to several media houses, which gave it prominent spaces on February 14.
In a letter entitled ‘Defamation of Dr. M.L. Igbafen: Demand for Refraction, Apology and Damages’ by his lawyer, Osehon Irebhude & Co. to the university demanded a written apology to be published in the university’s bulletin and in at least four national dailies.
Igbafen’s counsel is also asking the university authorities to pay his client N200 million as compensation for the injury he suffered by reason of the said offensive publication.
“The author of the write-up and the university knew that that allegation was unfounded, but was only meant to spite our client, and he has indeed been injured by the grave but untrue allegation contained in that offensive publication.
“However, be put on notice that our client will be constrained to approach the court of law for the due protection of his rights, if the foregoing demands are not heeded within 30 days,” the lawyer said.