We write with total dismay to draw the attention of His Excellency, the Governor of Kaduna State on the recent biased recruitments of unqualified staff in Kaduna State University. It is adduced that the present administration of Mallam Nasir El-Rufai is known for excellence, transparency and the respect for due process in all its dealings. But to our chagrin, an institution which is supposed to be the citadel of knowledge and excellence is engaged in nepotism, bigotism and disrespect for due process, transparency and non-adherence to extant rules and regulation, negating the essence of what the institution is established for. Actions which negate global best practice, fairness, equity and justice. Actions which completely undermine the transparency campaign of this administration, capable of generating suspicion, resentment, and chaos in Kaduna State University. Actions which may affect the relative peace enjoyed in the University and the state at large.
It is observed that Kaduna State University has a laid down procedures for appointments, guided by its approved guidelines for appointments as follows:
Recruitment in Kaduna State University commences with the existence of vacancies and in compliance with the National Universities Commission (NUC) guidelines on the staff mix requirement of each Department.
Confirmation of the number of staff requirements by the Heads of Department/Unit.
Confirmation of adequate approved budgetary provisions to accommodate the required staffing during the year.
Approval is sought from the Visitor to recruit the required number of staff.
Advertisement of the vacancies is placed on National Dailies soliciting interested persons to apply. Unsolicited applications from Departments are also considered.
Long listing of applications.
Short listing of candidates with required qualifications for interview.
Management constitutes an interview panel, normally headed by a Deputy Vice Chancellor with the Registrar, University Librarian, Bursar, Director Academic Planning and the Deans/Heads of Department as members.
Interview and verification of candidate’s qualifications.
Management recommendations of the candidates to be recruited in line with the approved Guidelines for Appointments and Promotions.
Memorandum for staff appointments is forward to the Appointments and Promotions Committee of Governing Council for approval in the case of Junior Staff and recommendation to Governing Council for approval in the case of Senior Staff.
Governing Council considers and approves the recommendations of Appointments and Promotions Committee.
Letters of offer of appointments issued to successful candidates.
Recruitment of non academic staff reflects the State character (as much as possible)
Recruitment of Academic staff is mostly based on qualifications of candidates preferably Ph.D. degree holders.
But to our greatest surprised and shock, impunity has rear its ugly head in the recent appointment in Kaduna State University, negating all the above procedures, leaving majority of the staff in cold feet.
Your Excellency, our investigation reveals as follows:
Internal or external vacancies for the positions were not advertised. The Vice Chancellor, with the approval of the Chairman of Council initiated this recruitment and presented to the Committee of Council for necessary approval. It may interest and perplex you to know that, some of the candidates were offered letters of appointments before consideration by the Committee of Council. While the Council met on 10th of April, 2017, letters of appointments of these staff were issued on 9th of March, 2017. That means putting the cart before the horse. This act clearly negates the transparency policy of the present administration and denying the best candidates and whole Kaduna state indigenes the opportunity of being employed in the University.
What is most worrisome is that Heads of Department concern were not involved in the whole process, neither was any committee constituted to interview the candidates. Where and how the Vice Chancellor and the Chairman of Council sourced for the candidates appointed is totally unknown. This shows the naivity of the Vice Chancellor as well as the Chairman of Council in the recruitment process of the University or it might be that it is a sheer act of impunity, nepotism and exclusiveness.
It may interest you to know that the information provided in the memorandum to members of Council were false and misleading as the curriculum vitae of the candidates were not made available to member of Council ascertain the veracity of each candidate’s claim. How can you reconcile the fact that a candidate without requisite number of publications is appointed as Senior Lecturer while a candidate with Ph.D. and 15 unconfirmed publications is appointed Lecturer II. Also, candidates with B.Sc. in Sociology, Economics and Mass Communication are appointed as Assistant Librarian even when the guidelines for appointment of staff in the Academic Library cadre provide that a candidate must hold a Bachelor Degree in Library and Information Science (BLIS/BLS). This is unprofessional and an act capable of destroying the reputation of the University.
The most unprofessional and provoking issue is that candidates who were offered appointments as Professor, Senior Lecturer and Lecturer I were at the same time appointed Provost of the College of Medical Sciences, Dean and Head of Department respectively before resuming duties and without the prior approval of either Senate, Management or Council. This has already generated serious issues currently at the Faculty of Medicine with some aggrieved staff threatening to resign their appointments. A situation that may be detrimental to the forthcoming accreditation of the Medical Science programmes and jeopardize the whole achievements recorded by the university so far.
The process adopted by the Vice Chancellor and the Chairman of Council were unjust, imbalance and insensitive as it did not give opportunity to all qualified candidates to apply. Out of the 52 candidates appointed, the Northern senatorial zone (Zone 1) had 24 candidates, representing 38.7% of the total number of candidates appointed, the Central senatorial zone (Zone 2) had 29 candidates, representing 46.8% while Southern senatorial zone (Zone 3) got only 1 candidates, representing 1.6% and the remaining 7 candidates are non-indigenes representing 11.3%. Out of the 24 candidates from Zone 1, 10 are from Zaria Local Government area and out of 29 candidates from Zone 2, 12 are from Kaduna North Local Government. This is out rightly unjust; the lopsidedness is a shame and a slap to fairness, equity and justice.
Below is the analysis of the appointments.
Permit us to posit that the Vice Chancellor terminated the appointments of some staff on sabbatical without recourse to the needs of departments concern giving lame reasons that the university trying to save cost. This comes at a time when the departments concerned rely to a large extent on sabbatical staff to secure accreditation.
It appears that the Chairman of Council is arm twisting the Vice Chancellor so much that he requested for an office to be furnished for him in the university. This is an indication that the Chairman of Council is trying to force himself on the day to day running of the university. Also, it will interest you to know that on resumption to office as the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Muhammed Tanko was directed by the Chairman of Council to prepare and sent a separate additional list to JAMB for approval, all in favour of one section and religion even when the university has exhausted its quota.
In running the university, the Vice Chancellor and the Chairman of Council have taken discrimination along the direction of religion and ethnicity to a new height that has never been witnessed in the history of Kaduna State University. This provocative acts if not checked has the potentials to erode the fabric of the university.
All your efforts to ensure security in Kaduna state is undermined by the Chairman of Council with the appointment of a highly suspected character as Chief Security Officer of the University against the decision of the Council. The antecedents of Col. Ogwuche are well known as he is the father of the arrested terrorist mastermind of Nyanya bomb that shook the Federal Capital. Ahmadu Bello University has since dispensed with as a result of this issue.
Information gathered reveals that the university is gradually retrogressing within a very short period. Your prompt intervention will possibly save the university from total collapse.
We the concerned citizens of this great state demands as follows:
That the Government of Kaduna State should without delay intervene by revisiting the whole lopsided appointments exercise carried out by the Vice Chancellor and Chairman of Council of the University.
Total cancellation of the appointments and a new transparent process should be carried out in strict adherence to the principle of due process, fairness, equity and justice observing the guidelines for appointment.
His Excellency should call the Chairman of Council to order to stop interfering with the day to day running of the university.
His Excellency should direct the Chairman of Council to reverse the appointment of Col. Ogwuche in order to save the state from another serious calamity and inbreeding of bad characters into the University.
In conclusion, it is noteworthy for His Excellency to know that the university is in a precarious situation and needs immediate intervention. There is already tension and feelings of apprehension amongst staff that requires the urgent attention of His Excellency who is known for his penchant for fairness and excellence to forestall a complete breakdown of law and order.
Please, we are appealing to His Excellency to advise the Chairman of Council keep within his bounds and direct the affairs of the university appropriately.
Long live Kaduna State University!!!
Long live Kaduna State!!!
Long live Nigeria!!!
For Kaduna Good Governance and Unity Forum