The National Association of Nigerian Students, Joint Campus Council, Ondo State, has accused Rector of the Federal Polytechnic Ile Oluji, Prof Emmanuel Adedayo Fasakin, of shielding staff members caught sexually harassing female students.
SaharaReporters had reported how the management of the institution rusticated the President of the Students Union Government, Rolland Olamilekan, for two semesters for exposing the sexual harassment of a female student of the institution by a staff member.
The staff member, Mr Banji Aina, who works in the school’s administration unit, had been harassing and threatening the National Diploma 1 Science Laboratory Technology female student named Blessing Ulebe for weeks, vowing to make life difficult for her in the school, except she gave in to his sexual advances.
To make good his threat, Aina sourced and got Ulebe’s mobile number and began bombarding her with calls and even traced her to her hostel of residence one night in order to actualise his goal of having sex with her.
Frightened at the uninvited presence of the administrative staff member of the polytechnic in her room on the night of February 8, 2022, and fearing that the worst could happen, Ulebe quickly alerted her friends to her situation. Her friends in turn escalated the matter until it got to the knowledge of Olamilekan and his fellow SUG executives.
The students’ leader quickly mobilised a few comrades and arrived at Ulebe’s hostel at about 8:37 pm that night to intervene and rescue the young lady.
But the events that followed that incident have not only exposed the management’s tradition of turning justice on its head but also opened a can of worms into the large-scale sexual harassment of female students going on in the school for a long time.
Investigations by SaharaReporters revealed that apart from Mr Aina, several more staff members of the federal polytechnic openly sexually harass and threaten female students without any form of sanctions by the school’s management.
For instance, in audio recordings and WhatsApp chats, SaharaReporters discovered how one Mr Peter Olowookere, a staff member of the medical unit of the school, constantly threatened to “destroy” the lives of female students, who failed to give in to his sexual advances.
Ondo NANS JCC in a statement signed by its Chairman, Comrade Omotoso Surprise, and Secretary, Comrade Akinola Elijah Temitope, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to sack Fasakin as he has failed to protect female students from sex abusers.
The students’ association also accused the rector of using Operatives of the Department of State Services and Nigeria Police Force to intimidate its leadership in a bid to protect his staff and management caucus, who have been accused of different filthy and despicable things unworthy of a citadel of learning.
The statement read, “The leadership of National Association of Nigerian Students, Join Campus Council, Ondo State axis, wishes to use this medium to call the attention of the whole world to the tyrannical abuse of power and obvious shielding of sexual abusers by the Rector of Federal Polytechnic, Ile-Oluji, Prof Fasakin.
“The secretariat of NANS had received lots of calls and complains about the alarming rate at which the staffs of the polytechnic molests and sexually abuses the female students of the institution.
“On March 16, 2022, NANS led a delegation to engage and inquire more on the inhumane act been meted out on the female students. The delegation led by NANS Ondo State Chairman, Comr. Omotosho Suprise met the management of FEDPOLEL on the several reports of sexual abuse of students by staff and members of the top management team and the consequential rustication of the Students’ Union President, Comr. Roland, on the issue.
“After the very peaceful protest and the meeting with the management, NANS delegation returned to their respective campus hoping the situation has been handled and the Rector, Prof Fashakin would nip the situation in the bud but the rector in his tyrannical behavior resorted to use the Department of State Services and the Nigeria Police Force to intimidate the NANS leadership of the state in a bid to protect his staff and management caucus that have been accused of a filthy and despicable charge unworthy of a citadel of learning.
“The entire leadership of NANS Ondo State appreciates the DSS, Commissioner of Police Ondo State and the Aaea commander Ondo for the fatherly role and handling the issue in a matured manner. The cases of sexual abuses has eaten so deep that members of the top management team confidently lodge students in hotels and threaten those who summon the courage to say no.
“We can’t but ask why Prof. Fasakin is taking sides with these sexual offenders and not those abused? Why would anyone in his/her right thinking shield sexual offenders? Dear Nigerians, it is now very obvious to us all, that Prof. Fasakin is a power drunk tyrant and an accomplice in the rampant sexual abusing of female students
“Consequentially, the tyrant rector and his management invited students to the Student’s Disciplinary Panel because of the protest that was staged by NANS and to further intimidate the entire students populace from crying out in the future. The entire secretariat of NANS would attend the Student’s Disciplinary Panel as it was the association which protested at the polytechnic not the undergraduates of the institution.
“It’s rather unfortunate that Prof. Fashakin in his usual unintelligent manner threatened to shut down the gates of the polytechnic, we, NANS leadership, dare Prof. Fashakin to come true with his threat and shut the institution’s gates. In a short period another Rector would take over as your (Prof. Fashakin) days in office are numbered.
“Comr. Suprise Omotosho has reiterated his promise to the Nigerian Students to protect their rights, their lives and their properties against any form of intimidation, even from the irresponsible preying claws of the tyrant, Prof. Fashakin.
“Following due protocols, Prof. Fashakin should be aware that we have alerted the NANS national body, NAPS national body, NANS Zone D about the menace and to start mobilization against a tyrant if he continues on this treacherous path.
“Prof. Fashakin integrity and image has always being questioned. As at last year, he was in an embezzlement net after psiphoning the polytechnic’s funds for his personal use.
“We will like to call the attention of the Federal and State Ministries of Women Affairs, Education and the Attorney-General of Ondo State to investigate the cases of sexual abuse and warn off Prof. Fasakin from using security agencies to harass Nigerian Students. He is not the first tyrant we will face and will certainly not be the last we will confront! We cannot be cowed into submission!
“Once again, we promise to the at the Panel together. The leadership of NANS led the protest and we shall appear at the Disciplinary committee in support of our students suffering under Fasakin.”