The nation’s tertiary institution has come a long way. Since the establishment of Yaba Higher College, there has been a phenomenal growth in the sector, which now include private institutions.
According to stakeholders, these growth and development have not been without challenges, some of which have been caused by the rapid physical expansion or in some cases by social, political and economic factors.
Certainly, this is not the best of time for the nation’s tertiary institutions. Aside the incessant strikes by staff unions, non-provision of adequate funds to pay salaries as at when due and lack of teaching facilities, the system is currently embroiled in scandal involving some lecturers and their female students.
In the last two months, two of the nation’s top universities, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife and University of Lagos, Akoka have been rocked by allegations of sex-for-marks. The lecturers fingered are high ranking academic staff.
A female postgraduate student of OAU, Miss Monica Osetobe Osagie leaked an audio recording of her conversation with Prof. Richard Akindele in the Department of Management Accounting demanding for five rounds of sex in exchange for marks.
The Vice-Chancellor of OAU, Prof. Eyitope Ogunbodede, set up a panel and based on its recommendation approved the suspension of Prof. Akindele.
That incident was still a talking point when on Thursday, May 24, an unidentified female student in the English Department of University of Lagos (UNILAG) accused Prof. Segun Awonusi of sexual misconduct and released three semi nude pictures which went viral.
In his defence, the former commissioner in Ogun State and former vice chancellor of Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), Ijagun, said his mobile phone, which contained the nude pictures was stolen. Prof Awonusi accused the unidentified female student of blackmailing him with the photos.
But Chief Lanre Ogunjobi, proprietor of Focus International School, Abeokuta, disagreed with Prof. Awonusi claim that his phone was missing thus the semi nude pictures that went viral on internet were inside. “Did he report to the police when the phone got missing? How did he take his personal pictures from a distance in his office half naked? Looking at the three pictures, it is obvious that he was not aware that someone took his pictures,” he declared.
However, time would tell as management of UNILAG has promised to launch a probe into the allegation.
Before Prof. Awonusi’s case, one Afeez Baruwa was alleged to have raped a female seeking admission into UNILAG. The 18-year-old victim was handed to the lecturer by her father who was his friend, to help her secure admission. But UNILAG management denied knowing the lecturer then.
Two years ago, a professor at the University of Port Harcourt was caught pants down having sex with a female student in one of the classrooms at night. The act took place on a desk inside the classroom, all in a bid to increase the student’s marks.
In 2016, at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, a lecturer was apprehended at a private female hostel in Samaru, after he sneaked into the hostel, disguised as a woman in a hijab. Findings showed that he was having an affair with one of the female students.
A randy senior lecturer at the Department of Languages and Linguistics, Osun State University, Osogbo, was caught on video in a hotel room with one of his female students. The female student used her Laptop to record the act and posted it on social media. The Governing Council after investigations terminated his appointment.
Two years ago, it was the turn of University of Calabar as a senior lecturer was accused of harassing a 16-year-old female Diploma student in the Faculty of Law.
In 2005, the Governing Council of the Lagos State University sacked a lecturer, who was caught in a hotel room on the verge of having sex with a 200-level undergraduate. He was sacked.