By Chioma Abigail Mbah, Awka

The Management of the College of Postgraduate Studies, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka has passed a vote of confidence on the leadership of the Provost, Prof Philomena Igbokwe.

This is contained in a statement from the college signed by Prof. E. O. C. Obidimma, Associate Provost (Humanities), for the College of Postgraduate Studies after an emergency meeting over some unfriendly and sponsored publications in the social media aimed at tarnishing the image of the College.

The College management and staff in the statement said the Provost, Prof Igbokwe remained distinguished in character, stickler of excellence, outstanding in leadership and could not be diminished by malicious attacks by faceless people online.

The College insists that there is no rot in any form in the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka Postgraduate College ,neither was there any staff of the college officially engaged in extortion in any form as the Ethics and Disciplinary committee of the university is at work 24 hours a day.

The College described the Provost, Prof Igbokwe and team as proactive and urged the reading public to disregard such reports online emanating from sadists, sore loosers and those who do not wish the College well and envious of the university’s feats in the Postgraduate College.

The crop of staff in the College are exceptional, diligent and dedicated to the goal, vision and mission of the University rooted in Discipline, Self-Reliance and Excellence. The College is open to any form of investigation as regards the said accusations, as the integrity of our great University and the College in particular, has always been and would continue to be in high esteem.

The College informs further that Prof. Philomena Igbokwe, the Provost of the College is not just the Provost of Unizik College, but also the immediate past Chairman of the Committee of Provosts and Deans of Postgraduate Colleges and Schools of Nigerian Universities. Prof Igbokwe is one of the most respected professors of Nnamdi Azikiwe University,Awka and one of the frontline female professors of Chemical Engineering in Nigeria (the first female professor of Chemical Engineering in Nigeria). Those who know her know that she is a very disciplined person and an administrator to the core, hence since her assumption of the seat as the Provost of the College, she has always ensured timely graduation of students and would always do everything humanly possible to maintain discipline and sanity in the College.

The College, not leaving anything to Chances, has set up a high powered committee of people with proven integrity to investigate the allegations dispassionately for the College to know the truth of the allegations and take all necessary disciplinary actions fit in such circumstances.

Part of the statement read thus: The College hereby denies the contents of the said online publication in its entirety as it contains no iota of truth in any ramifications.
The publication under reference is malicious and only intended to malign and harm the reputation of the College of Postgraduate Studies and to bring the individuals mentioned therein into public opprobrium and ridicule. Of a truth, there is no “extortion and fraudulent crimes” being perpetrated in the College against the students and no student is made to pay the sum of N8,400.00 (Eight thousand four hundred Naira) or any amount whatsoever for the purpose of having their results sent to the College Board for approval or for any purpose whatsoever.

“There is also no threat to any student of not seeing his/her results on account of non-payment of the alleged amount demanded. These allegations are fallacious and are as baseless as they are unfounded. The College does not generate results. Results are computed/generated by departments where students have the opportunity of seeing their results if they wish to. This is not shrouded in secrecy. The College only collates results for presentation to the College Board for approval.

“On the issue of Postgraduate students spending many years in running Postgraduate Programmes, the College states that this issue cannot be located at the doorstep of the College except for the purpose of calling a dog a bad name in order to hang it as is being done by the writer of the article in question. This is so because Postgraduate Programmes are run by departments which control the management of the Programmes. The College only supervises and intervenes on occasions (as it has done) where it’s attention has been drawn in matters of conflicts between students and supervisors/lecturers with the potential of prolonging the students’ programme. The College does not play any part in delaying students’ programmes.
The College reiterates that no form of extortion or fraudulent crime is being perpetrated in the College against the students whose interests the College serves and protects at all times. Let it be known also that Mrs. Njideka Nwangwu is not engaged in any high-level financial extortion as alleged at all, and that the Provost of the College, Prof. Philomena Igbokwe has no knowledge of any such alleged high-level financial extortion let alone being involved in such dastard and inhuman act. If the writer had employed due diligence and professionalism in his pursuit as he ought to, he would have verified the facts and arrived at a balanced view and the truth.

‘The College is not unmindful of the defamatory nature of the publication under reference and the potential damage it could cause as it is understood that the sole purpose of the said publication is to tarnish the image of the College and that of the individuals whose names and photographs were published therein. The College is taking steps to remedy this wrong, and the individuals mentioned in the publication are also taking steps to initiate the appropriate legal actions to remedy the incalculable damage and the emotional distress caused by this unwarranted publication.

‘The College of Postgraduate Studies, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka refuses to be distracted in the noble services it is rendering to humanity’, the statement concluded.

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