THE 49 LIARS: A REBUTTAL

“They have no knowledge of such a thing, nor their fathers. Grievous is the word that comes forth from their mouth. What they say is nothing but falsehood.” (Q.18:5)

If I were a Professor of English, I would have begun by repudiating the authors of the verbiage that generated this rebuttal, circulated on Wednesday and Thursday (December 28 and 29, 2016) with sadistic frenzy in traditional and new media, as deranged, reckless, mischievous and psychopathic nincompoops. But as I am not, I would only take recourse to the Prophet’s statement when he was unjustly persecuted on the day of Taif: God forgive them perhaps something good will come from their future generations.

In spite of the allusion to Prophet Muhammad’s approach, I would not have condescended to dignifying the defamatory statements issued against my person with a response on three counts. The first count is that one would not bite a dog simply because a dog has bitten one. The second is that the issue was claimed to have been reported to the EFCC, which has the means to take the right course of action after establishing the prima facie of the case brought before it. The third is the need to thwart the Satanic objective of distracting me from the national assignment which they protested against but failed.

Nevertheless, given the avalanche of text messages, mail and phone calls I have received from all over the world, I realize that if I do not set the records straight, at least for those who believe in me and what I represent, like Dr Mahfouz Adedimeji of the University of Ilorin, whose appreciated intervention was on point, I might not be fair to them. Secondly, the assassins did widely circulate and celebrate the “destruction” of the “victims” beyond the EFCC and across nations. I therefore deserve to be heard through the same routes.

In a period when common sense is no longer common, it would not be surprising that some people would not take effusions that are bereft of an iota of sense with a pinch of salt.  So, the vituperations that “the 49 liars” and their mentors directed at me more than four years after I left office as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin are explained thus:

The Pension Act of 2004 provided that 7.5 per cent of emoluments should be deducted from staff salaries and remitted into their pension accounts with Pension Funds Administrators (PFAs). Most universities, including the University of Ilorin, based the calculation of 7.5 per cent on basic salary and transport allowance. This was the case between July 2004 and December 2006 before I became Vice-Chancellor. I know no PFA and if salaries were deducted and saved in employees’ accounts, I would not be the beneficiary.

Then, from January 2007, the Government that is matching the employees’ contribution with another 7.5 per cent directed that the deduction should be based on Consolidated Pay. Some universities were compelled by the fake and fraudulent campus hyenas not to comply with the directive of 2007. About two years into my tenure, my attention was drawn to the new decision which was of course advantageous to workers whose higher sum was being equally matched by the Government. I convened a meeting of stakeholders including the Unions on the Government directive and all parties agreed not only to commence the higher savings (which Government doubles rather than double lower contributions) but also to double the difference for a certain number of months to ensure full compliance with effect from the stipulated January 2007.

I summoned the Ilorin representatives of all the PFAs to reiterate the date of compliance from when higher matching additions from Government should also be credited to each contributor’s account. Any averagely educated person would understand who the beneficiaries of the compliance are, who for their tomorrow sacrifice a part of today’s comfort rather than the unreasonable agitators who insist on consuming tomorrow. Some universities under the spell of some club crawlers do not comply to the eventual disadvantage of their unfortunate retirees and perhaps to the advantage of clever PFAs. If those who parade doctoral degrees cannot understand this simple logic, may God save Nigeria from the anarchists. I as Vice-Chancellor complied and I believe few other universities did. How that would benefit me personally baffles me.

The subsequent introduction of IPSS made deductions by the university unnecessary. Government was making the deductions from the source and crediting the PFAs and these ignorant characters believe that my successor should also be nailed on behalf of the Federal of Ministry of Finance. If what was being deducted at the University of Ilorin had been abnormal, IPSS would have corrected the abnormality, common sense dictates. When grey areas arose, clarifications were made with the PFAs. For my own pension deductions, I also had to approach my PFA to be on the same page with them regarding my contributory pension.

Those who compare the contributions of two Professors based on different interpretations of deduction suffer from selective amnesia more so when Professors are of different levels. Some Senior Lecturers even earn higher Basic Pay than some Professors based on the number of years they have spent on their ranks. Why did they hide this fact as a possible factor for disparity in intra-university or inter-university disparity?  Why would supposed academics who teach methods not start from PENCOM for authentic information before unilaterally declaring guilty and celebrating insubordination?

I am extremely selective in accepting gifts from even personal friends. My needs are limited and my legitimate income is sufficient to spend on my volunteer work. I have never in my life collected bribe, inflated contracts, extorted anyone nor accepted gifts beyond “Thank You greeting cards” from any contractor, dead or alive.

As Vice-Chancellor, I started the practice of publishing the financial transactions of the University every Monday in a publication circulated far and wide by hand and online. This has happily been sustained by my successor to-date. Those who have skeletons in their cupboards don’t choose to publish their financial details. I am aware many universities don’t do so till today and the charlatans who make frivolous allegations against me should mention their mentors who do so.

Information Technology is good to determine the quality of the hirelings assembled to assassinate my character. The only one I faintly know among them led his pastor and his father-in-law, a former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, to me in order to mount pressure on me to offer his wife, the Vice-Chancellor’s daughter, a temporary appointment as an Assistant Lecturer. I bulged to pressure out of deference to the father-in-law (because the Department could do without an additional lecturer) and the man of God. But soon thereafter, this character became a strong advocate of withdrawal of the power of temporary appointment of the Vice-Chancellor!

I do not claim perfection as it is the exclusive preserve of the Almighty Allah but I dare say I stand on a higher moral pedestal than “the 49 liars” and their masters. God will continue to keep them busy and they shall continue to lament their failure at the University of Ilorin and in life precipitated by their own inner insolvency. The barking of dogs does not affect the flight of a plane.

This statement is just to re-assure my admirers that the allegations against me are like pure wind with no solidity. I remain who I have ever been by the special grace of Allah, the Almighty.

Lastly, my explanation does not foreclose the possibility of legal action against the authors of the campaign of calumny against me and their willing collaborators. For the latter, I hope they will have the shame of publishing my rebuttal and if they don’t, I still believe it will reach all the right audience, anyway.

I rest my case for now and season’s greetings to you all.

Signed

Prof. Is-haq O. Oloyede, OFR, FNAL

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10 Responses

    • Tajudeen Saibu

      I have not lost my sleep since I read about the devilish story on the social media because I knew the devils are at work again. How can the devils rest when light of Allah is shinning and piloting us to greater successes and the devil must meet conditions of divine doom apportioned him already?

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  1. Folorunso Adisa Fatai
    Folorunso Adisa Fatai

    As expected, like Mahfouz Adedimeji, like Oloyede.
    Incontestably, they will continue to remain restless as long as Unilorin and Prof. Oloyede have continued to win while enemies have become recurrent and legendary failures.

    The barkings of dogs certainly cannot affect the flight of the plane.
    The Yorubas in their ingenuity submitted that ‘ibaje eniyan koleda Ise OLuwa duro’. They cannot smear prof. Oloyede’s image, they cannot daub the University of ilorin’s image.
    We are Unilorites, we are Better By Far.
    End of discussion.

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  2. Aderoju Abdulgafaar

    I’d never believed in such allegations at first sight. I hope those are mere distractions “Ariwo Oja”. I trust you’ll quickly respond to critics by putting up good plan in your current assignment….

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  3. Abdulsalam Kanyinsola
    Abdulsalam Kanyinsola

    Those of us who witnessed the seizure of scripts of exams already conducted and had to retake all those over again know they didn’t start now. Prof Oloyede image can never be tarnished. Eni olorun da ko se fi ara we.

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  4. Wasiu Raji
    Wasiu Raji

    Copied from Olajide Peters’ comment on ASUU’s allegation published by Vanguard of 29/12/2016. Please see the comment section of Vanguard for details. “Oloyede is a reputable figure that can’t be dragged to disrepute no matter the level of propaganda. His profile speaks for him. National ASUU should emulate what their colleagues in the U.S., Canada, and U.K do for their Universities, and stop wasting their time soiling the personalities of people they perceived to be personal enemies. Nigerian Press should heed the advice that they do investigative journalism rather than copy & paste sensational journalism. My personal enquiry at EFCC shows that no document was submitted by ASUU as at the 29th December, contrary to their claim. ASUU may proof me wrong by posting the ‘EFCC stamped copy’ in the public domain’. I think Govt. should devise a mechanism to punish those who mislead the public with purpose. Two of my colleagues here in Canada share their opinions with me as thus: ‘National ASUU is at it again, they are scared of the posibility that Prof Oloyede might get a bigger post when Buhari reshuffles his cabinet next year; they are fighting tooth and nail to stop the guy from better appointment’. As a former student of Unilorin, We have known National body of ASUU and Oloyede for about two decades, the later made the former to loose grip of Unilorin for strike actions. Even before he became the vice-Chancellor@ Unilorin, they have been blackmailing him. Oloyede has a clean record, transformed Unilorin to enviable position between 2008-2012, and deserve to be treated with respect”.

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  5. Johnson Tunde

    I congratulate the trusted and tested Professor, You are wonderful, let ASUU continue in their shameless attitude, they think everybody will be like them. They destroyed all our universities in the name of “make education better for the masses”. Unnecessary strikes has brought all our public universities down. They find it difficult to say the truth at the time when falsehood thrives. A good example is the case of OMOLE AT OBAFEMI AWOLOWO UNIVERSITY who was awarding Professorship on the bases of who supports me. OAU ASUU was bought cheaply because the Chairman was a lecturer I who needed promotion by all means. Omole destroyed the legacy erected over a period of about 40 years. ASUU people are no more reliable, leave them to their calumny, history would not forget them.
    THE CURSE OF THE ENTIRE NATION WILL NOT ALLOW YOUR ENEMY TO REST.

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  6. Tosin Mamo

    JAMB REGISTRAR, UNILORIN, PENSION FRAUD AND OTHER IMPROPRIETIES: OUR RESPONSE
    (by Dr. K.N. Afolayan, ASUU UNILORIN CHAIRMAN (as published in Tribune of 06/01/2017, p.9)
    In the past 48 hours, Prof. lshaq Oloyede, former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, and Mr Kunle Akogun, spokesperson for the University have suffused the media with their “rebuttal” of allegations of pension fraud and other improprieties against them [Professors Oloyede and A.G. Ambali] and their administrations. The allegations were contained in a petition by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
    Since the substantive petition is squarely before the EFCC, there is no reason to continue to join issues with them in any elaborate fashion. Let them make their “rebuttal” available to the EFCC. However, certain distortions, untruths and half-truths contained in the so called “rebuttals” need to be debunked, so that discerning members of the public will not be misled.
    The issue of illegal and unaccounted pension deductions in UNILORIN is an old one, which has been swept under the carpet until now. Anyone who tried to raise a strong protest regarding it in UNILORIN, or regarding any other anomaly for that matter, was branded as a “saboteur” who want to sabotage the “peace and stability” and “unbroken academic calendar” of the university. That is how the community has been cowed for so long. What is now forcing the accused persons to respond and account for their misdemeanor is the combined effort of ASUU and the power of the progressive media. To that extent, the petition and its publication have already achieved a cardinal objective.
    However, the UNILORIN administration and Professor Oloyede, in their rebuttals, largely resorted to abuses, blaming imaginary enemies and trying to whip up religious sentiments, rather than confronting the substantive issue. This is a typical Nigerian response, which is disappointing. One expects a more intellectual and dignified approach from operatives of the ivory tower.
    Professor Oloyede’s resort to abuse is particularly disappointing for someone occupying numerous political and religious positions both governmental and non-governmental. Referring to academics of other universities as “fake and fraudulent hyenas” or as “dogs” and so on is certainly not the kind of language expected from anyone claiming to be on a “high moral pedestal.” It is true that when people come under pressure, that is when their true personality and their true vulnerabilities emerge.
    The fixation with the UNILORIN 49 in the so-called rebuttals is also a needless diversion. Professor Oloyede and the University of Ilorin appear to be perpetually haunted by the saga of UNILORIN 49; their phobia for the group is palpable. However, the petition before the EFCC is not by the 49. As the Chairman of ASUU in the branch, I am not a member of the 49, neither are the members of my executive who were elected into office last year. On the other hand, many of the UNILORIN 49 were actually Oloyede’s lecturers who are now retired; at least, one of them who is a retired Professor of Islamic Studies taught him directly. And many were his comrades with whom he wined and dined and who had assisted him on his way to the top. Therefore, by collectively denigrating the group, Oloyede only deprecates and demeans himself.
    Again, Oloyede’s claim of publishing the accounts of the university every week is another hype of deceit. For example, in 2011 when Oloyede was VC, three hundred and two million naira (N302 million) was taken from the university account as part of litigation cost or judgment debt, but like many other significant transactions, this huge chunk did not reflect in the cosmetic weekly financial account published in the Bulletin. This selective accounting shows just how “transparent” the system was.
    Professor Oloyede also condemned himself in his “rebuttal” by his confession that, as VC, he employed staff unnecessarily into senior pensionable positions following “pressure” from some persons (in this case a “Pastor” and a “former Vice Chancellor”)! When ASUU opposed his appointment as JAMB Registrar on the basis of his record of improprieties, including nepotism and violation of due process, little did the Union know that he would soon supply some of the evidence himself. Maybe the appointee in question was not even qualified for the position! But the problem is not the pressure piled. To appoint a teaching staff when “the department could do without an additional lecturer” is tantamount to a felony, contributing to the economic adversity of this country. Who knows how many unneeded staff people like Oloyede saddle the government with all over the country and the resources that go down the drain as a result of this act.
    On the pension matter itself, the main issue is in two parts (for the benefit of those who are not aware). First is that from December 2011, Prof. Oloyede, as UNILORIN VC, suddenly doubled payment of pension by the employees, contrary to the pension law, leading to undue economic hardship and encroachment on the individual worker’s economic rights, and possibly constituting an undue burden on the national treasury. Secondly and more grievously, from May 2012, Prof. Oloyede as VC commenced another set of deductions parallel to the above, purporting this one to be “arrears of previous under-deductions”. This latter set of deductions, which Oloyede’s successor, Prof. Ambali continued, never made it into the employees’ pension savings account! This is the crux of the matter, which the so called ‘rebuttals” did not address.
    Oloyede’s claim of “government directive” to increase the volume of pension is neither here nor there. Where is the circular from NUC, Ministry of Education or Head of Service to that effect? The fact that other universities mentioned in the petition were either not aware of such a “directive” or insisted on the dictates of the pension law, puts a question mark on Prof. Oloyede’s claim, or on his motivation at the time. His narrative does not tally. If the government directive was in 2007 as he claims, and his employees have agreed with him by 2009, then why would the deduction not start until December 2011, four years after the “directive” and two years after the Unions purportedly agreed? Prof. Oloyede has become so jittery that he has even rushed to NTA to parade some papers purportedly from ICPC. We advise him to be calm, as this is not a matter for media razzmatazz. Since when did ICPC become the directing authority for universities? And since when did workshop materials from ICPC become administrative circulars? ASUU’s position is that pension contribution is a matter of law that government directive cannot overturn.
    However, let us move away from Prof. Oloyede’s fanciful narrative and examine some core facts about how the workers were ‘carried along” on the issue of pension deductions.
    In a circular dated 28 December, 2011, the UNILORIN administration’s own “ASUU” when Oloyede was VC said: “The Union’s Exco viewed the last strange deduction from our salary with utmost concern.” Furthermore, when they took the administration to task in a meeting at which two Deputy Vice- Chancellors and the Bursar were present, the Bursar, according to the circular, “apologised to members, through the Union, for not providing information on this important deduction …”
    In another circular dated 24 May, 2012, entitled “Burning Issues,” the same group decried “the abysmal removal of a huge portion from our May 2012 salary” and that “the ASUU Exco of the University of Ilorin was NEVER privy to the decision of administration to commence the implementation of the deduction of the said “Pension Shortfall” (emphasis theirs).
    In yet another circular dated 28 January, 2013, the group stated that: “Your Exco was dismayed and more importantly embarrassed to experience the resurgence of Pension Underdeductions [sic] in our January salary … the Unions on Campus requested the Vice Chancellor [Ambali] not only to refund the deductions already done by the previous Administration [Oloyedej but further deductions should stop.” They also said in that release that “The JAC [Joint Unions Committes] was dissatisfied with administration for re-introducing Pension Deductions in January 2013 salary against our earlier advice.”
    These circulars accusing Oloyede of impropriety were by Oloyede’s own “ASUU.” They were not by any imaginary enemies such as the UNILORIN 49 on whom the University administration forever blames all its woes! The circulars were not even by the constitutional ASUU. As can be imagined, the constitutional ASUU, now led by my humble self, also put up a stiff, sustained and well-documented opposition to the pension fraud where the others retreated.
    The above circulars were dated from 2011. Thus, contrary to Oloyede’s smokescreen “rebuttal,” the issue is not just being raised “four years after his exit as VC” or invented somehow by ASUU members who are too envious of his huge “successes” in life. When people like Prof. Oloyede who claim to occupy a “high moral pedestal” do not present events as they were, then it is time to define what “moral pedestal” really means.
    The crux of the matter, however, is: what happened to the money deducted from the workers during the disputed period?
    According to Oloyede, “if salaries were deducted and saved in employees’ accounts, I would not be the beneficiary.” He also referred to IPSS and deduction at source by government. Such statements can only impress those who are not familiar with the way the system works. Right now, as we speak, even with IPSS and later TSA, the University of Ilorin is holding on to more than N100million of staff members’ cooperative money even though ostensibly, “it has been deducted and saved in the employees’ accounts.” Every worker is familiar with this charade. When a VC deducts money and does not remit it, then he is the beneficiary, to do whatever he wishes with the money. Incidentally, the pension law prescribes punishment for employers who deduct money and fail to remit. If that aspect of the law had been truly operational, many Chief Executives would be in jail.
    Professor Oloyede’s reference to IPPS (sic) is irrelevant and was calculated to mislead the unsuspecting public. The petition concerned a period before either IPPIS or (recently) TSA, which centralised payments and deductions. IPPIS was resisted by ASUU and did not become operational in the University system until late 2015 at the earliest. In the period when Oloyede was VC and doubled the pension deductions from UNILORIN workers, such monies remained in the coffers of Universities (and other parastatals) for the VC to “play around” with for a while.
    In December 2012, Prof. Ambali as VC refunded three months out of the illegal deductions tagged “pension under-deductions” to the entire staff. The common sense here is that if the refunded millions had been “saved in employees accounts” as Prof. Oloyede claims, then how come that huge chunk was refunded? Above all, where is the rest of the money?
    Maybe the EFCC will now help to find the deducted millions when the commission looks into the books of the University and of course the books of the former VC, Prof. Oloyede.

    Dr. K.N. Afolayan
    Chairperson
    (For and on behalf of Academic Staff Union of Universities, UNILORIN Branch)

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