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University of Ilorin: No rift between former and present VCs – Akogun

*Details of cold war revealed

Vice-Chancellor, University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem, says he will build on the achievements of his predecessor, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali, who upgraded the University’s Faculties from 12 to 15.

Kunle Akogun, the Head of Corporate Affairs of the University, told journalists in Ilorin that presently 69 projects were inaugurated during Ambali’s tenure.

The Head of Corporate Affairs, who was reacting to the alleged rumour of friction in the institution, said he was not aware of any friction or misunderstanding between the former and incumbent VCs.

Akogun described as a rumour a report that there was a cold war between the two personalities and urged the university community to ignore it.

Akogun added that the report was just an imagination of those that did not mean well for the University.

Akogun explained that there was no tension whatsoever in the school as there were no disagreement and misunderstanding between Ambali and Abdukareem.

He noted that the incumbent vice-chancellor even sang accolades on his predecessor throughout the programmes of the University’s 33rd Convocation.

Akogun also quoted the new boss to have pledged to continue with the good work the former VC engaged in during his five years reign at the University.

While it was true that Ambali was conspicuously absent at the venue on the first day of the convocation, he was, however, in attendance on the second day.

Abdulkareem resumed his new position on 16th October following the expiration of the tenure of Ambali.

The alleged friction in the campus was as a result of the former vice-chancellor being locked out of the convocation venue on the 20th October, just a few days to the expiration of his tenure.

Sources, who were privy to the issue, stated that Ambali, who was in company of his friends and family members, was denied access into the campus through the main gate.

He, however, reportedly detoured and followed a new route, which links the school from the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, only for the gate of the side to be also be closed when the security guards sighted him.

Ambali was said to have made frantic effort to get the new Vice-Chancellor through a phone call and Abdulkareem reportedly promised that keys would be brought to open the gate.

The source said: “After over 45 minutes of Prof Ambali’s stay at the locked gate, his followers became agitated and wanted to cause crisis, which might disrupt the convocation.

“He, however, pleaded with them and urged them to follow him to his private residence.”

This, he said, was the reason why the former Unilorin chief was not part of the University council’s procession on the first day.

Collaborating the issue, a staff of the institution, who spoke on condition of anonymity told www.gongnews.net stated that less than 72 hours after Abdulkareem took over, he transferred no fewer than 28 staff in the office of the Vice-Chancellor and replaced them with his people with immediate effect.

He said that the action was against an advice that the staff should be allowed to stay to understudy them before any transfer.

It was also gathered that both the Dean and Sub-deans of Students Affairs were also moved without any reason except that they were allegedly loyal to the former vice-chancellor.

All these actions, the staff alleged, was creating a tension and division among the staff of the institution.
Efforts to get the reaction of the former and incumbent VCs did not yield result as at when we went to press.

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