The Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational (NASU) in Osun State University have accused the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Labode Popoola, of mismanaging over N106million funds of the institution.
The union in a petition dated October 18, 2017, alleged that Popoola had since the beginning of his tenure in November 2016, syphoned and mismanaged the state-owned institution’s N106,607,592.00.
The petition which was jointly signed by the Chairman and Acting Secretary of NASU, Isaiah Fayemi, and Dada Kunmi, respectively claim that “Popoola had been doing everything in his power to discredit, silence and cripple NASU in Osun State University in order to get away with his financial impropriety.”
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A copy of the petition which was sent to the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the UNIOSUN Governing Council, Malam Yusuff Ali and was obtained by Channels Television correspondent was entitled: “Reasons Why The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Labode Popoola is After NASU.”
It reads in part, “Permit us to say that we are worried that the VC, Professor Labode Popoola, has been able to successfully commit all these under your watch as the Governing Council Chairman, going by your antecedents. We are not also surprised because he (VC) has been boasting that he (VC) is in control of the Governing Council under your watch. Sir, his actions so far also confirmed the statement.
“Mr Chairman Sir, we are reliably informed that the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Labode Popoola has written against NASU to the Governing Council for a sole purpose of blackmailing our union, NASU. If the VC is not predetermined to unjustly deal with NASU in order to cover-up his dirt, why is he monitoring our congress? Or, can’t we gather together again as enshrined in Section 40 of Nigerian constitution of 1999 as amended.
“All these against NASU, he (VC) is doing because he must have been informed that NASU is the only union that can expose his financial impropriety. Sir, NASU members have refused to be intimidated, humiliated, and victimised by the Vice Chancellor or anyone in the corridors of power because our union stands for truth, justice, equity and operates with facts and figures.”
The NASU has also called for the immediate probe of the allegations of fraud levelled against Popoola, warning the Governing Council against sweeping the accusations under the carpet.
Upon receipt of this petition calling for Popoola’s probe, it was authoritatively gathered that the university’s Governing Council in its meeting on Friday, October 20, 2017, constituted a panel to investigate the allegations.
A three-man panel chaired by a professor of International Relations at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Professor Solomon Akinboye was set up to investigate Popoola.
Other members of the panel include Mr Awe from National Universities Commission and Mr Nurudeen Adeagbo from the Osun State Ministry of Works.
When contacted, Professor Popoola simply described the allegations as a situation of “corruption fighting back in the university.”
“Just do your independent search on Labode Popoola as a person, a scholar and an administrator. Find out how much UNIOSUN is worth in cash, after years of profligacy and sleaze by the current petitioners.
“Find out how a VC has succeeded without government subvention to pay staff salaries in full before the end of the month, for his 12 months in the saddle. Reflect also on what unionism has become in our clime- a tool of cheap blackmail by people who have no business being in the academia. We are dealing with a simple case of corruption fighting back,” he said.