Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has appointed a veteran accountant, Sir David Olabanji Sunmoni, as the new Pro-chancellor and chairman of the reconstituted Governing Council of the Lagos State University (LASU).
Sunmoni’s selection came about seven weeks after the Governor – the Visitor to the school – dissolved the Prof. Nurudeen Ninalowo-led Governing Council on the recommendation of the Visitation Panel that probed the crises and controversies surrounding the selection of substantive Vice Chancellor (VC) for the school.
The appointment of new Council members followed the recommendation of the Prof. Bamitale Omole-led panel, which also counselled the Governor to order fresh selection process for the substantive VC.
Sanwo-Olu, however, returned 12 other officials, who served in the previous Council led by Ninalowo.
Inaugurating the 13-member Council at the State House in Alausa, on Thursday, the Governor pointed out that there were wide consultations with the stakeholders before the members were selected, saying one of the urgent responsibilities before the new Council was to immediately activate the process for the appointment of a new VC.
Sanwo-Olu admonished the Council members to strictly adhere to due process, extant laws of the school and to be fair to all contenders.
He said: “Inauguration of new Governing Council for the Lagos State University (LASU) signals a new chapter of progress and resolution of issues surrounding the appointment of a substantive Vice Chancellor for the university. As the supreme governing authority of the university, I charge you to give top priority to implementation of quality policies and programmes that will accelerate the pace of development and growth of the university.
“One of the key responsibilities of the Council which requires your urgent attention is the activation of the process for the appointment of a new Vice Chancellor for the university. In performing this responsibility, I urge you to be guided by the lessons from past events and ensure strict adherence to relevant laws, guidelines and procedures.”
The Governor urged the Council members to work tirelessly to sustain and improve existing peace and industrial harmony in the university, saying the progress of the school was the only way to justify the confidence reposed in them.
He charged them to come up with innovations, programmes and policies that would move the university forward and maintain its academic excellence, while assuring the Council members of the State Government’s continuous support.
Sanwo-Olu noted that special consideration was given to the appointees’ pedigrees, competencies, work experience and their contributions to the development of the State and the country.
He said: “As members of the new LASU Governing Council, I charge you to bring about your wealth of experience and accomplishments in your various chosen professions to impact positively on the management, policy formulations and smooth running of the university. I urge you to consider your appointment and this inauguration as a call to duty and service to your fatherland.”
Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab, said the Council members’ appointments were made in pursuant of the powers conferred on the Governor by the enabling laws of the school.
He said the ceremony became imperative in order not to create vacuum in the governance of the school.
Sunmoni, an indigene of Ikorodu, described his appointment as a “unique opportunity” to serve the people.
He promised to work with members of the Council and university administration to make the school a citadel all stakeholders would be proud of.
“We will do our best and work assiduously to take the school to the next level. The school under my leadership would be a pride of all. We will never disappoint the confidence repose in us by Mr. Governor,” Sunmoni pledged.
At the event included the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Folashade Jaji, Chancellor of the school, Prof. Gbolahan Elias, SAN,
Acting VC, Prof. Adedamola Oke, and Acting Registrar, Mr. Emmanuel Fanu.
Other members of Council are Mrs Tolagbe Taiwo, Mrs Moronke Williams, Mr Tolani Sule, Dr. Hakeem Adetugbobo, Mr Anuoluwapo Oladele Eso, Mr Adebayo Akinsanya, Mrs. Foluke Kafayat AbdulRazaq, Prof. Shaffideen Adeniyi Amuwo, Mrs Adenike Yomi-Faseun, Mr Adekunle Soname, Mr Karl Toriola, and Dr Ifeanyi Odii.