In a move to address concerns over alleged sexual harassment of students, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, has taken decisive action by demoting several lecturers implicated in the disturbing allegations.
Dr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, the Special Adviser to the Vice Chancellor of the University on Public Relations and Special Duties, confirmed the demotion of these lecturers. He, however, dismissed rumors circulating on social media about a recent student protest related to the issue of sexual harassment within the university.
While specific details regarding the number and identities of the demoted lecturers were not provided, Dr. Ojukwu shared a statement on Friday addressing the situation. He clarified, “The attention of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka Management has been drawn to a publication in the social media that female students of our university were protesting sexual harassment by lecturers in the university. It is important to state that there was no protest of any sort in the university.”
The university administration, however, is actively conducting an investigation into the alleged cases of sexual harassment involving certain lecturers. In response to the investigation’s findings, the Vice-Chancellor promptly took action by removing the accused lecturers from their official roles and issuing strong warning letters within the relevant departments.
Despite the serious nature of the allegations, the process of obtaining evidence has proven challenging. The students who made the allegations did not provide testimony before the investigation panel. In light of this, the Vice-Chancellor called for a meeting with the affected departments to express the university’s dismay. He emphasized the importance of upholding the university’s reputation and warned both lecturers and staff against actions that could tarnish its name.
The Vice-Chancellor firmly stated that the university’s management is prepared to take strict disciplinary measures against any staff member found guilty of misconduct, particularly those involved in the molestation or sexual harassment of students. To provide a safe and confidential means for students to report any form of harassment, a dedicated telephone number has been established.
The Vice-Chancellor reassured students that the university is resolutely committed to their protection. He underscored the institution’s dedication to addressing all allegations of sexual harassment with the gravity they deserve, ensuring a safe and supportive environment for all members of the university community.