Ogwashi-Uku Poly: Okubor debunks meddling allegations in staffing matter

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Dr. Festus Okubor, Chairman, Governing Council, Delta state Polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku.

The Chairman of the Governing Council of Delta state Polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku Dr. Festus Okubor has denied accusation that he is interfering in the recruitment process for the appointment of the Chief Librarian of the institution.

Dr. Okubor spoke on phone in response to claims that tension was building up in the institution should the Governing Council go ahead to interfere with the recruitment exercise to impose one Dr. Alex Obuh, who is also alleged does not have the relevant experience to be the Chief Librarian, contrary to the laid down guideline as advertised by the institution in one of the National Newspapers on 27th May, 2019.

Debunking the allegation, Dr. Okubor said: “The law of the institution set out very clearly how Principle officers will be recruited for the school. When you study the laws establishing the institution, you will understand that any person saying that I am interfering, you appreciate the fact that the person is an illiterate.

“I cannot interfere in what does not concern me, and I cannot be said to interfere in doing my own job, but I can tell you straight away that anybody who said I am interfering, such person must be an illiterate.

“For such levels of recruitment, it ends with the governing council. It is the governing council that recruits them, so you cannot now be deceived that the governing council is interfering. It is the Governing Council that recruits principle officers, except the Rector, in the sense that the Visitor of the Institution does that.

“Therefore, the buck stops at the table of the Governing Council; the recruitment of the principle officers and the staff rest on the council. So, if am to recruit you, can somebody now come and say that I am interfering. His employer is the Governing Council,” Dr. Okubor stated.

However, protagonists of the allegation argue called attention to the advertorial placed by the polytechnic in the Vanguard newspaper of May 27th, 2019 indicating that applicants for the position of Chief librarian for the institution should possess the required academic qualification, and cognate experience of 15 years in an academic environment.

They also stated that from the list of shortlisted candidates attached to a report now in circulation, it stated that of the eight applicants, the committee headed by Dr. J.U Akajakpor, a chief lecturer of the institution approved for consideration those it believes were qualified for the appointment. And they are: Mr. Aniogbolu A. Chukwudi, Dr. D.O Akparobor, Mr. Akpokurerie Azino Oscar, while it listed Ogochukwu T. Emiri (Ph.D), Dr. Alex Obuh, Rev. Marvelous N.B Nwajei, Ehiwuogwu E. Mercy, and Irivwieri J. W, as not qualified for the position.

The protagonists of the allegation in the report stated that in the case of Dr. Alex Obuh, the committee discovered that, though to his credit, he had published 15 journals, five chapters’ contribution in a text book and presented six conference papers, but pointed out that he was deficient in the number of years of work experience, as he had 11 years cognate experience, as against 15 years required. It was also alleged that at the time of screening, he (Dr. Alex Obuh) had no national service certificate.

Meanwhile, Dr. Festus Okubor called the attention of banneronlinenews.com/bannermedianetwork.blogspot.com to Section 25 of the institution, and it read: “An advertisement was made and applications received following which Council empanelled a Selection Board in line with Section 25 of the extant laws of Delta State Polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku, which states as follows:

“When a vacancy occurs in any of the offices of a Principal Officer, a Selection Board consisting of:
(a) The Chairman of Council;
(b) The Rector;
(c) Two members appointed by the Council not being members of the Board nominated by the Board;
(d) Two members appointed by the Council not below the rank of a chief Lecturer;
(e) Experts not being members of the polytechnic nominated by the Council after due consideration with the Rector.
“The Selection Board after, after making such inquiries as it thinks fit, shall recommend a candidate to the Council for appointment to the vacant office, and after considering the recommendation of the Board, the Council may make an appointment to that office.”

Asked if the said Dr. Alex Obuh is indeed qualified for the position of the Chief Librarian, the Chairman Dr. Okubor said: “Let me tell you something, by the oath and subscriptions that I have made, I do not disclose the things that come to me in my official capacity outside of my official work, so I will not go into that, but what I can assure you is that the council under my chairmanship is meticulous to ensure that laws are strictly, clearly understood and strictly adhere to.

“Secondly, that it is also the bounding responsibility of the council to seek the best for the institution to move it to higher levels, to make the institution stronger, to deliver on his mandate, that is our mandate and in doing that, of course, we are bound by the laws of the institution and not by emotions.

“I can assure you that the council is very keen and eager to understand the laws properly and apply them strictly, all in the goal of ensuring that we bring in the best hand to tutor our students and guild them, provide them with the needed services to come out on top of their generation and we are proud of the work we are doing so far.

“I can tell you, only recently, the federal ministry of education offered scholarships to tertiary students and out of 27 scholarships awarded, 23 of the recipients are students of Delta State polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku. So, we are proud.

“We are proud of what the school is doing, we understand that there may be distractions; we understand many people would like to be librarians, many people would like to be Rector, many people would like to be Bursars, so many people would like to be registrars. They would have their permutations and calculations, nothing is wrong with that; there is nothing wrong in aspiring.

“My duty is that to pray that we have wide field of people showing interest in the school, it means that the school is doing something right and if we are not doing ok, when we advertise, nobody would have to apply. But if many people apply because of the fact that the school is doing good, it gladdens us, even when it creates work for us.

“The work is, of this entire people, find one person that will carry the dreams and aspirations of the school and run with it with a view to making a success of it. That can be a lot of work, but in doing such work; you will usually keep emotion aside,” the Board Chairman affirmed as he urged Deltans to continue to have faith in the ability of the Governing Board of the Institution to continue to move the school to a greater level of academic excellence and discipline.

“I will like to tell Deltans that a high premium is placed on academic excellence, a high prize is placed on discipline, a high prize is placed on our student coming out and being bold and able to stand on their own and a lot has been done and results are showing,” Okubor stated.

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