The Senate has directed the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to investigate the alleged unofficial demotion of lecturers of the Federal University, Otuoke, in Bayelsa State.
On December 18, 2018, SaharaReporters had reported that at the 10th meeting of the Governing Council of the institution, the decision to demote seven professors was announced.
Among those stripped of their professorship are Leonard Shilgba of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics; Steve Nwabuzor of the Department of Civil, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, and Sepribo Lawson-Jack of the Department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering. Others are Obalade Falade, Department of Banking and Finance; Marcellina Offoha, Department of Sociology and Anthropology; Evans Eze, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, and Felina Nwadike, Department of English and Communication Studies.
However, a petition on behalf of the lecturers was raised by Andrew Uchendu, the senator representing Rivers East in the National Assembly, during the plenary session on Wednesday.
The petition is challenging the demotion by the vice chancellor of the institution, an action the lecturers refer to as "unlawful".
The matter was referred to the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions and it is expected to submit its report in two weeks.