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Unical management has no vested interest in Dean’s suspension – Vice Chancellor

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University of Calabar

 

Prof. Florence Obi, Vice Chancellor (VC) of the University of Calabar, (Unical), has disclosed that the management of the institution had no vested interest in the suspension of Prof. Cyril Ndifon, former Dean of the Faculty of Law.
Obi made this known in a press briefing on Monday in Calabar, following allegations that some senior members of staff of the institution wanted the professor out.

It would be recalled that Ndifon was on Aug. 17 suspended by the institution after he responded to a query given to him by the school management.

The query followed allegations of high handedness, improper behaviour towards female students, extortion, and unequal treatment among others.

The VC said, following the response to the query from the former Dean over the allegations leveled against him by staff and students of the faculty of law, they were left with no other option other than to set up an investigative panel.

She said the panel, which followed the public service rules, would involve some staff of the faculty, the institution’s alumni, Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, (FCCPC), and police among others.

“On Thursday Aug. 10, some law students led by their president came to my office to see me on some alleged improprieties going-on in their faculty and dropped a formal petition.

“Based on the issues that were raised by the students, the management decided to meet with senior academics in the faculty and while we were having the said meeting on Aug. 14, we were informed that some students were protesting.

“We granted the students audience and they raised issues that bordered on accountability, abuse of office, extortion, sexual harassment and many others”, she said, alleging that sexual harassment gained more prominence in the public space.

She assured the students that the allegations would be looked into but the meeting with the senior staff of the faculty that continued later, revealed many other allegations not touched by the protesting students.

According to her, the management resolved with the staff of the faculty of law on the need for some basic changes to be effected in the faculty to prevent what they termed as the overbearing influence of the Dean in the faculty.

“Some of the immediate decisions we took was setting up a committee on student mobilisation to law school because the students had alleged that the Dean was being selective and using female students as bait.

“We also mandated the committee to look at the list of law school students that had been sent by the former Dean and if need be, the list will be recalled.

“While we removed two examination officers from the faculty and set-up a vetting committee following allegations of result manipulations, we also set up a student project committee that will be assigning projects and grading.

 

“This follows allegations that the former Dean was in the habit of selecting only female students as his supervisees thereby making them vulnerable,” he said.

She maintained that the management had ordered a compilation and submission of list of students extorted by the faculty, to be refunded following allegations of extortion of students in the faculty, among other weighty allegations.

While adding that the management would not fold its hands and accept ugly scenerios in the institution, both the students and staff who had alleged and the accused former Dean would be given the opportunity to defend themselves before the panel.

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Unknown Gunmen Abduct Channelstv Reporter In Port-harcourt

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Some unknown gunmen have kidnapped Joshua Rogers, the ChannelsTV reporter in Port-Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.

Politics Nigeria learnt that Rogers was picked up close to his residence at Rumuosi in Port Harcourt and to an unknown destination by the gunmen around 9pm on Thursday, April 11.

The reporter was driving his official ChannelsTV branded car when the hoodlums accosted, pointed a gun at him and took him away in the same vehicle.

 

Rogers was said to be returning from his official assignment in Government House after a trip to Andoni for a government event when the incident happened.

Already, the gunmen were said to have contacted his wife and demanded a N30million ransom for bis release.

His cameraman confirmed the incident and appealed to his abductors to set him free unconditionally.

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Lassa Fever Kills 150 In Nigeria — NCDC

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According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC), 150 people died from Lassa virus in 125 local government areas throughout 27 states in the federation between January and March 2024.

The NCDC reported that the deaths were recorded with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 18.6% overall from week one to week thirteen, 2024. This is higher than the CFR for the same time in 2023 (17.5%).

In its Lassa Fever Situation Report Epi Week 13, which was released on March 25–31, 2024, the agency revealed that 806 of the 5,295 suspected cases that were recorded were confirmed. Eyes Of Lagos reports,

According to the report, in week 13, the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 25 in Epi week 12, 2024 to 15. These cases were reported in Ondo, Bauchi, Plateau and Edo states.

 

In total for 2024, 27 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 125 LGAs, even as 62 percent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported from Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi states, while 38 percent of cases were reported from 24 states with confirmed Lassa fever cases.

Of the 62 percent confirmed cases, the NCDC said Ondo reported 24 percent, Edo 22 percent, and Bauchi 16 percent. The predominant age group affected is 31-40 years (Range: 1 to 98 years, Median Age: 32years), with a male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases of 1:1.

From the report, the number of suspected cases (5,295) increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2023 (4,338).

The agency confirmed that the National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Incident Management System has been activated to coordinate response at all levels at the Emergency Operations Centre, EOC.

No new healthcare worker was affected in the reporting week 13, the report noted.

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