Ugar Ukandi Odey, Jos
The selection of a new Vice Chancellor of the University of Jos, Plateau State, is generating complaints in different quarters as contending parties biker over what they view as lack of proper procedure in the selection process.
Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Sebastian Maimako’s five year tenure is eclipsing and a search for a new Vice Chancellor has begun.
A source said there is yet to be a substantive replacement for the University’s Governing Council Chairman, Prince Tony Momoh, who passed on in February, while the University Act stipulates that tbe screening of the new Vice Chancellor will be done by the Chairman of the council.
According to the source, the lacuna created by the death of the University Council chairman has become a big problem and the basis of the controversies that have arisen to haunt the selection exercise.
A source in the University said section 4(2), (3), & (4) of the University Act clearly states that where vacancy occurs for the post of a Vice Chancellor, the Governing Council shall advertise the vacancy in a reputable journal or widely read newspaper in Nigeria specifying the qualities of the candidates who may apply for the post, the terms and conditions of service, and thereafter draw up a a shortlist of suitable candidates for consideration.
He said “the council shall then constitute a search team consisting of a member of the council who is not a member of the senate as chairman”, adding that “the council shall constitute two members of the senate who are not members of the Council, one of whom shall be a professor; two members of the congregation who are not members of council, one of whom shall be a professor”.
Again, he said the council shall identify and nominate for consideration suitable persons who are not likely to apply for the post by their own volition.
The source also noted that the above stated procedure and many more are yet to be followed in the selection process which is expected to happen soon, and maintained that if there is no intervention to correct the abnormality, it will generate a big crisis in the institution that may disrupt academic activities.
The source called for urgent intervention from the appropriate authorities as well as investigation into the matter in order to avert the looming crises, noting that many interest groups and individuals have vowed not to allow any abnormality in the selection of a candidate for the position.
A total number of 18 candidates are jostling for the Vice Chancellorship position from across several universities in the country.