By Richard Ndoma, Leadership Newspaper
Suspended Law Faculty Dean of the University of Calabar (UNICAL), Prof Cyril Ndifon has sued the Institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Florence Obi for character defamation and alleged sponsorship of protest against him just because she wanted him out from the position of Dean.
In Suit No: NICN/CA/ 42/ 2023 between Prof. Cyril Ndifon (claimant), the Vice-Chancellor, University of Calabar, and three others as defendants, Ndifon expressed displeasure over what he described as dragging his image into the mud even when he did nothing wrong.
In an originating summons from the National Industrial Court of Nigeria, Calabar Judicial Division Holden at Calabar, the defendants who include: UNICAL Registrar, UNICAL, and Prof. Dorothy Oluwagbemi-Jacob to within eight days after service of the summon on them cause an appearance to be entered to this summon.
“If the defendants do not enter appearance within the time and at the place, a love mentioned such order will be made and proceedings taken as the judge may think just and expedient”. The summons maintained.
In exhibit 9 emanating from an affidavit attempting to set the facts relied upon, the embattled Prof. of Law, accused the Vice Chancellor of colluding with the LAWSAN president (UNICAL chapter), Mr. Obi Benedict Otu, with one of the VC’s nieces, one Destiny Omokiti, to stage manage a protest against him so as to pull him down.
“Shortly after the said protest, Mr. Obi Benedict Otu issued a press release where he revealed that he deliberately hid his intention and real purpose of protest from innocent students who were freshers and upon their concealment of purpose, tendered a public apology, that went viral on social media,” The affidavit maintained.
“My right and freedom of movement to the University of Càlabar premises has been restricted and curtailed by order of the Vice Chancellor. I am gravely prejudiced on account thereof. Ndifon stated.
“To remove from office as Dean of Law Faculty without any prior vote taken at a meeting of faculty of law board for purpose constitutes a departure from the prescriptions of the University of Calabar Act,” he said.
A clause from the right of summons sighted by Leadership Newspaper reads, “By virtue of exhibit 10, the panel headed by 4 defendants is not Management Disciplinary Committee as established and provided for by extant regulations Governing condition of service of staff of UNICAL.
“The panel lacks the locus and competence to undertake the assignment in its term of assignments.
“I am greatly prejudiced and subjected to excruciating psychological pain, trauma, and anguish on account of the adore stated acts of defendants. The right of summons maintained.”
Reacting to the issue in a telephone conversation, Unical Public Relations Officer PRO, Mr. Effiong Eyo, stated that the University only set up a panel to investigate allegations against the embattled Dean of Law Faculty.
“No one has found him guilty, what we did was to Investigate the alleged misconduct but since he felt the court was the only option we will be there for the hearing,” Eyo stated.