FOLLOWING the management crisis that have been rocking the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, for over four months now, the proprietors, Oyo and Osun State governments, have said they can no longer continue to own the university as a joint venture.
Accordingly, the Federal Government is to take over the management of the university. Already, a transition committee to oversee the affairs of the university is to be set up by the National Universities Commission (NUC) for the next three months.
These resolutions were the outcome of the truce brokered by the NUC management on the expiration on Thursday of the ultimatum given by the commission for the two state governments to resolve the issues involved amicably or lose the licence of the university.
Director, Executive Secretary Office, NUC, Professor Chiedu Mafiana, who briefed newsmen in Abuja on Friday on behalf of the NUC Executive Secretary, Professor Julius Okojie, said the two state governors, Adebayo Alao-Akala of Oyo and Olagunsoye Oyinlola of Osun, who have been locked in the ownership crisis, have agreed to the recommendations of the commission.
Both states were represented by the secretaries to their governments and commissioners for education: Chief L. A. Olakojo and Prof. Taoheed Adedoja for Oyo State; as well as Alhaji Kazeem Adio and Mr. Kolawole Hassan for Osun State.
The two parties were given 24 hours within which to respond to the proposal presented to them by the NUC management after extensive dialogue on the issues in contention.
Mafiana disclosed to journalists that the two state governments agreed to the NUC proposals, and by implication, the governing council of university stands dissolved as the transition committee will be soon inaugurated by the NUC and will run the university until final arrangements on assets sharing are completed.
The proposal on the outcome of the meeting held on Thursday with the representatives of the two state governments addressed to the two governors, entitled, “Re: Proposal of National Universities Commission on Governance/Management Issues at LAUTECH” reads:
“The executive governors will please refer to the National Universities Commission (NUC) letter Ref. NUC/ES/244Nol. 32/37 of27 August 2010. The commission appreciates your acceptance of its consideration to arbitrate on the matter vide your letters Ref. EG/OSGH/114 of 1 September, 2010 and GOV.25Nol. II/445 of 1st September, 2010 from the governors of Osun and Oyo States respectively.
“As a mark of its commitment to amicable resolution of the issues, the commission, conscious of its responsibility and the need to safeguard the interests of staff, students, parents and guardians, considered the issues in contention at a meeting with officials of the two states on Thursday, 2 September 2010 at the NUC Secretariat, Abuja.
“Following extensive discussions, the meeting proposed the following actions towards full and amicable resolution of the governance/management issues at LAUTECH:
“A Transition Committee, to be headed by a reputable academic, shall be appointed to run the affairs of the university for a period of three (3) months; the Governing Council of the university shall stand dissolved immediately on appointment of the Transition Committee.
“The head of the Transition Committee shall not be an indigene of any of the states in the South West geopolitical zone: During the transition period, the roles of the Visitor to the university and the Vice-Chancellor shall be suspended.
“The university shall retain its present admission quota for both Osun and Oyo states in the 2010/2011 admission session; the interest of staff and students shall be fully protected irrespective of their state of origin.
The governors of Osun and Oyo states were required to accept or reject the above proposals not later than 3rd September, 2010.”
Mafiana, addressing newsmen, said the two states have accepted the proposal, bringing to an end the months-long crisis rocking the institution.