• Tuesday, May 28, 2024
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Plateau heads of tertiary institutions not sacked but suspended

Plateau heads of tertiary institutions not sacked but suspended

…Information Commissioner, Ashoms, reacts to protests

The Plateau State Commissioner for Information and Communication, Musa Ashoms has debunked claims by some groups in the state that the heads of tertiary institutions were sacked.

Ashoms, who disclosed this in a telephone interview with BusinessDay in Jos, said that the heads of the institutions were only suspended from office following some allegations against them.

BusinessDay had earlier reported that youths from Butura, the community hosting Plateau State University (PLASU) in Bokkos, had expressed strong opposition to the state government over the sack of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Bernard Matur.

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According to a protest statement jointly signed by Marshal Sule, president of Butura Youth, and Tabai Kawai, secretary, in Jos, the removal of Prof. Matur, who is from their community, lacked due process.

They cited specific legal provisions governing the removal of a vice chancellor, emphasizing the need for transparency and fair investigation, which they claimed were not followed.

The youth leaders pointed out that the university’s governance should be based on laws and expertise, not political affiliations.

Similarly, the Chairman, Joint Plateau State Owned Tertiary Institutions (JPSOTI), Peter Longbaam decried contentious issues plaguing the tertiary institutions in the state.

At a press conference in Jos, he highlighted the arbitrary removal and appointment of Chief Executives, citing the disregard for established laws governing such actions.

The Union questioned the criteria employed, expressing apprehension over the potential accreditation repercussions.

But reacting to the development, Ashoms explained that the state government led by Governor Caleb Mutfwang was poised to bringing sanity into all sectors of the state economy, adding that tertiary institutions in the state were not left out.

While disregarding the earlier protest by Bokkos youths calling for the reinstatement of the Vice Chancellor, Plateau State University Bokkos where the suspended VC hails from, the Commissioner noted that the heads of tertiary institutions were not appointed base on tribe or religion but competence.

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Ashoms, who underscored the need for harmonious and peaceful coexistence in the state, also said the decision was in the best interest of the state.

“The decision of the state government to suspend heads of tertiary institutions in the state is for the benefit of all. If they are not fond wanting at the end of the day they will be reinstated.

“I want to make it clear that heads of tertiary institutions are not appointed based on tribe or religion, that is why Nigerians are VCs in other countries. If an institution is situated in your place, it does not mean somebody from the catchment area must be made the head,” Ashoms said.

BusinessDay gathered that the state government has since appointed the new heads of all the tertiary institutions in the state all in acting capacity.