The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Arc. Sonny Echono, says his email address has been hacked with false messages being churned out through it.
Echono, who was reacting to an advertorial in one of the nation’s dailies which accused him of manipulating the University of Lagos (UNILAG’s) visitation panel report to cover up alleged shady deals by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, said he did no wrong.
PlatinumPost reports that the advertorial signed by Prof. Boniface Oye-Adeniran, on behalf of concerned UNILAG’s alumni, said Echono had issued three irreconcilable statements recently that clearly show that the Permanent Secretary is complicit in all the wrongdoings of the Ogundipe’s Administration as an accessory before and after the fact of crime.
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“Arch. Sonny Echono claimed that the Prof. Tukur Saad Panel exonerated Prof. Ogundipe of wrong doing. The Chairman of the Panel, Prof. Tukur Saad, by a letter written to the Federal Ministry of Education on 7th October 2020 confirmed that his
Panel report never exonerated Prof. Ogundipe. Prof. Ogundipe was found culpable for: a. Contract splitting;
b. Frivolous expenditure on himself and his cronies;
c. Concealing the accounts of the University of Lagos from the Council, which by statute is responsible for finances of the University.
“The report also confirmed that Dr. B. O. Babalakin was totally above board in dealing with the finances of the University. Dr. Babalakin never benefitted, or received a single kobo, from being Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council of the University of Lagos.
“By a subsequent letter to the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Tukur Saad declared that the Panel’s report could not be the basis for any White Paper.
” Prof. Tukur Saad confirmed his position on Arise television station on Sunday, 19th of September 2021. He said clearly that: The Panel was inappropriate as it was a biased Panel, with an agenda to exenerate Prof. Ogunulpe irrespeve of the merits of the allegations against him,” parts of the advertorial read.
But responding to the issues, the Permanent Secretary in a terse statement through the Director of Public Relations in the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Gong, denied the allegations.
He said :”This is outright fabrication. I never said the report existed but was not signed. They are leaving the substance of the claims which were rebutted viz: that the Governing Council followed due process in removing the VC and appointing the Ag. VC and that the VC was given fair hearing.
“They claimed that the new Visitation Panel report exonerated the Prochancellor of these and indicted the VC and Mgt (sic) . I stated clearly that non of these featured in the TOR (sic) of the regular Visitation Panel except that all allegations against the VC and Mgt should be referred to the regular Visitation panel for investigation and recommendations.
“White paper committees have not been set up so I cannot prempt their work. But the new Panel did not review the work of the previous Panel so could not have upturned or exonerated the former prochancellor.
“Whatever false allegations they make against me cannot change the facts. I have been maligned, defamed and falsely accused for refusing to suppress the report of a Presidential Panel despite the enormous pressure. My email was hacked this morning and false messages are being sent. The public should take note, please. Arc. Sonny Echono.”