By Olayinka Owolewa
Offa (Kwara) – The Federal Polytechnic, Offa chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Kwara, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently appoint a substantive Rector for the institution for its smooth running and peaceful co-existence of stakeholders.
The chapter’s Chairman, Mr Moses Atilola, call appeal in Offa on Wednesday while briefing newsmen.
He explained that the union as a critical stakeholder in the Polytechnic has made several entreaties towards the appointment of a substantive Rector for the school ranging from letters to the Minister of Education to visits to the minister and also not limited to several non-official communication channels.
“There is no ambiguity in the position that all necessary constitutional and statutory procedures have been fulfilled in satisfaction of the requisite conditions precedent to the appointment of substantive Rector at the Polytechnic.
“From the advertisement declaring the position vacant and request for applications, constitution of a Search Team (which performed their function by short-listing candidate for interview).
“We also put in place a Selection Board (which also completed their task by crossexamining the short-listed candidates) and the final recommendation of three (3) most successful candidates to the Visitor through the Minister of Education since January 2022.
“The case of Federal Polytechnic Offa is somewhat unique as the institution is confronted with enormous challenges that only the appointment of a substantive Rector can rectify,” Atilola said.
While enumerating some of the challenges facing the institution, he said the polytechnic has been under the leadership of an acting rector since January, 2022 (more than 8 months) against the legal provision of a maximum of six months tenure, which has resulted into serious challenges in administration and proper functioning of the institution.
He said the recent demise of the Registrar of the institution has also resulted in an Acting Registrar, while noting that the Deputy Rector Academics has retired and his position is still vacant till date.
Atilola also declared that the current acting rectors’ tenure as Deputy Rector will soon lapse by January 2023, and this will also create a further lacuna, if not remedied.
“These to mention but a few have left the polytechnic in serious disarray and the peace of the graveyard that has so far been managed by the Union might in no distant time culminate into a full blown crisis if immediate steps are not taken to appoint a substantive Rector who can lay most matters to rest,” Atilola said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the former rector of the institution, Dr Abdullateef Olatunji, retired on Jan. 11, while Dr Afolabi Olarongbe assumed office on Jan. 12. (NAN)