I seek refuge from Allah against Shaitan, the accursed…In the Name of Allah the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

First of all, let me correct the inanity of the author of that flaccid rejoinder from the stable of the purposeless VC that my name is Shehu Bashir and not “Sheu” as against the copy and paste demonstration of laziness by the University publicist who couldn’t take his time to atleast read from the source (my Facebook page) to see the correct spelling of my name, it says alot about his ability to pay attention to details.

Having said this, let me start with a similar prologue used in my original article by way of linguistical analogy, using another sets of ever applicable Yoruba idioms and proverbs to speak directly to the ear drums of these irregular administrators. They go thus: (1) Omo atiro to fé ra bata fun Baba e, óró lo fé gbó —– (2) Òmó aijebé ri, tin ja epo si aya —– (3) Òmó toni Iya ohun oni sun ni, ohuna ko ni fi oju kan orun.

These three idioms are going to guide us to understand where we are coming from, where we are right now and where we are going. I am going to take two stanzaic steps in addressing the intellectually dumb rejoinder ordered by Prof. AbdulKareem through the vaguely informed semi-professional overrated Director of Corporate Affairs for the University, Mr. Kunle Akogun. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting any rejoinder from the University for I am convinced the VC’s action is indefensible, but if at all it would come, I didn’t expect it to be this jaundiced, and worst still I never imagined it was going to be authored by someone that is rated to be reputably experienced in public affairs management. Their lack of intellectual appropriateness couldn’t have been more disappointing.

Therefore, addressing their nail-biting frustration, I am going to blast off their balloon of lies with just a finger nail. I am also going to talk about their infantile defence and catastrophic indictment of themselves, while querying their continued association with those they accused of betrayal and conmanship. Secondly, since the writer of that horrible rejoinder accused me of being jejune, I am going to lay bare some of the facts he knows not, including those which predated his perquisite employment in the University.

I have waited this long (over 24hrs after) to reply to that flat and self incriminating rejoinder from the University because, one, the side comments I have been reading from different people in reaction to that rejoinder are enough for me to sheath my sword. They have been vindicative. And two, I thought it would be cool for me to leave it till the close of work on Friday (6th-11-2020) all through to the weekend so that people will have time to read it at their leisure time.

Though, initially, I felt it was not necessary for me to respond again because many more intelligent people have been doing justice to their comments, but then, because the Vice-Chancellor through his spokesperson called me a hack writer (meaning I was paid to write this) and jejune writer (meaning I have no substance to back up my argument), I am under obligation to prove them wrong on both allegations while also educating them on what they know not about the spirit of BETTER BY FAR.

Let it be emphasized that if anything, the soulless rejoinder is indeed a corroboration of my initial argument on why the VC should have lived above sentiment and thought it through before he gullibly pushed the University into a dungeon of disrepute, he should never have caved in to his innate ethnocentric brutishness.

Lame as their defence is, it is equally interesting that the VC has accused the ASUU national of being membered by thugs, criminals, hoodlums and violent people who use daggers and all manners of weapons to attempt the lives of staff of the University. There is nothing more to this than the confirmation of the assertion that, the VC, knowing fully well that the ASUU national cannot protect the interests of the University he is heading, yet, he went ahead to join them. Call that suicide, you wouldn’t be wrong but it is going to be better defined as abuse of power and breach of oath of office.

Shameful as it is, what is more mortifying about the Vice-Chancellor’s chagrin is his public lamentations and howling for public sympathy over an embarrassment he brought upon himself. If only he had listened!

It is important to state that the only person who will go into an agreement with a “serial betrayer” of trust or one who will remain in that breached agreement is someone whose mission is not to keep the virtues of the legacy he inherited but someone who is out to destroy that legacy. Be as it may, the Vice-Chancellor has openly told us that ASUU national are fraudulent, dishonest, violent, untrustworthy and cantankerous group of people. I don’t know whether this is a dent on the image of ASUU national or a confirmation of the obvious, however, these adjectives as used by Prof. AbdulKareem on ASUU national will no doubt go beyond what happened here at the University of Ilorin in the course of the exchange of these literary missiles, it will further tell much about how some other stakeholders should see ASUU national especially at this special period that ASUU is at loggerhead with their principal stakeholder – the federal government. ASUU national must be rocking their chairs and wiggling in anger for this remark by their new friend. Let’s see how they react later.

While reacting to the referred rejoinder as a direct personal and official reply from the VC who must have approved of the cranky piece, I must not fail to tutor the ignorance of Mr. Akogun who has just awarded himself a new title of a “servile messenger”, who would only apply the olive oil of slavishness to massage the ego of his pharaonic boss even if he is heading towards the red sea to perish. This is where we separate men of honey from the men of honour.

For Mr. Akogun, the University of Ilorin you see today where you submitted unsolicited CV for job placement and got employed did not become a haven of job security and academic excellence overnight, people fought for it and many died in the process. If you must know, this same Shehu Bashir, like many selfless veterans, was a soldier in the battlefield for the survival of the University. The battle he participated in to bring the University to where it is today was not fought so that inept people like Mr. Vice-Chancellor will ruin the efforts of decades past. He didn’t take part in building a strike-free University so that errant people like the VC and Mr. Akogun will put a clog in the wheel of the progress of the University. It is important to educate the errable Mr. Akogun that if this is the way we did the job then, and the University remained in chaos, there wouldn’t have been an opportunity for him to submit his CV for employment let alone getting the favour for a perky position like the spokesperson for the University.

It is important to further educate Mr. Akogun that the same Shehu Bashir he is demonizing was greatly instrumental to his boss’s appointment as the Director of SIWES at a time. It was a favour we promoted without looking at which part of the state he comes from and which ethnicity he is born into. Mr. Akogun may wish to ask his boss how many times he used to call me in a day when he was in desperate need of a favour and how he frequented the cradle of his resuscitation in Kaduna Road, Adewole, Ilorin.

Mr. Vice-Chancellor, I dare you, which of the mercies of your Lord will you deny?

Let it be emphasized that the sole intention to take the ASUU Unilorin back to rejoin national ASUU by the VC was a predetermined and premeditated mischief and it was executed as a weapon of vengeance or show of victory against a certain people or interest. The VC in his unwarranted but blind hatred for those who helped him grow thought taking Unilorin Branch of ASUU back to the national body will mean a victory for his personal interest and defeat for his predecessors and their perceived interests, nay, it was (is) a treacherous betrayal of the trust of the honour of his office. The world will now see Mr. Vice-Chancellor and speak of him in the way he treats the trusts people bestow on him.

Mr. Vice-Chancellor can attempt to change the narratives as if we don’t have our history book intact. We actually do and we will remind him of everything he did to undermine the harmonious relationship between the UNILORIN ASUU and the University Management even at the early period of his tenure. We will remind him of how he was secretly receiving executive members of external ASUU from other Universities to strategize on how to weaken Unilorin ASUU and undermine its autonomy. We will remind the VC of how he tried to promote hostile candidates (to University interest) to be executive members of local ASUU in the last election and how he lost 9-0 to the current Unilorin ASUU leadership. People aren’t losing their memories faa, not now, not ever.

The Visitor to the University approved the appointment of Prof. AbdulKareem as the VC with the hope that he would keep the values of the citadel in line with the motto of the University “Better By Far” in “Probitas Doctrina”, rather, he betrayed that trust, sold his conscience and handed over the soul of the University to his friends and the University enemies like a traitorous soldier will do to sell his country to her enemy. Prof. AbdulKareem is not worthy of that office anymore.

Moving further, since I have been accused of making spurious allegations, I think the VC would be grateful to himself for challenging the veracity of my facts and I shall lay them bare one after the other.

I want to ask, between Mr. Akogun and the VC, who is going to deny the fact that in 2017, immediately the VC was appointed, and shortly before he was inaugurated, on his first official trip to Niamey in Niger Republic, to attend a conference, he made it clear then that he was going to force the ASUU local to rejoin the national ASUU at all cost. It was an unprovoked and unnecessary agenda and he was warned to desist from such mission impossible but he refused to heed. The VC should swear with the Holy Qur’an that he holds high (if he still does) that he didn’t have this predetermination long before he even took over from his predecessor.

With the shocking and sudden display of treachery by the VC against the University, by needlessly hanging the fortunes of the University on the cliff, experience is teaching us that we should never rate a man by his calm look, not all traitors carry guns.

I insist, the last three years of this administration have been more destructive than constructive – the academic standard of the University has been falling, the University rating is now at the lowest, the staff welfare has been very poor, nepotism, favouritism becoming the glaring order of the day and the chain reaction has been retrogressive in outcome.

The values and doctrines of the University are falling everyday since the last three years – It is only in this University that a VC would employ two of his biological children and give them over SIXTY MILLION NAIRA (N60,000,000.00) each for post graduate study in the UK even when neither of them has spent the required number of years on the job to be eligible for that award. It is on record that the young lady (his daughter) has not even resumed work when she got that huge amount of money. What an irony!

The fact remains that, this is not the University that was handed over to Prof. AbdulKareem, the University that was “bequeathed” to him was not the one where the Vice-Chancellor is expected to:

1) Pay his biological children over ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY MILLION NAIRA (N120,000,000.00) of TETFUND Scholarship when there are tens of qualified applicant lecturers who have been on the waiting list for years.

2) Purchase a car worth over SIXTY MILLION NAIRA for himself in the middle of pandemic, recession and poor staff welfare.

3) Unilaterally approve and pay himself over EIGHT MILLION NAIRA medical allowance for a foreign medical trip without evidence of even making the trip.

4) Award contract to cronies to the tunes of millions of naira without holding proper ministerial tender board.

5) Promote and support unconventional recruitment process, shortchanging the advert requirements, inviting only one person (among hundreds of applicants) for an interview, shortlisting a single candidate for appointment and subsequently appointing same as the University’s one of the top principal officers.

6) Ethnocentrically disenfranchise people from competitive process for principal officer’s positions.

Let us project what happens in the next future, if the VC is out of office tomorrow, what happens to this GREAT UNIVERSITY, wouldn’t our Alma Mater have lost its values? No doubt, when the VC is gone, the idea, the mechanism he will be leaving behind as the most inept, treacherous, directionless, divisive, conceited, ethnocentric and inexperienced VC will remain for a long time. Indeed posterity will judge the VC, not just for his administrative blunders but also for his deliberate mischief to destroy the University’s age long legacy and achievements.

Prof. Sulyman Age AbdulKareem, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin can continue to cry wolf all he wants with a puerile defence of his misdeeds, the fact is, nobody is holding him in high esteem anymore, not even his staff are happy and comfortable with him, but he can continue to live in denial of his failures, seeing the mirage that he is doing well.

University of Ilorin is an institution globally known for its tradition for academic integrity and consistent administrative intelligence, specially demonstrated by its last four Vice-Chancellors. The intellectual inconsistencies of the current Vice-Chancellor has however been driving the University in rear direction. Sad! There is no doubt the University will nurse the wound of this assault for years to come and will probably be left with an indelible scare but in the long run, the University will be Better By Far.

If anyone is still in doubt that this writer is not a hack writer, you may wish to know that this is a patriotic agenda to continue to shine our vigilant eyes on the University that gave us everything. Personally, UNILORIN gave me all it had – the knowledge, resilience, boldness, intelligence, intellectual sagacity, integrity, moral, respect, social prestige and public honour. I am a proud Alumnus of the University with many degrees, I had everything from that citadel, I want my children and others to have everything from her, and so, we would not allow any incompetent and compromised people like Prof. AbdulKareem to destroy that revered Institution.

Please note, if I have to put a full stop to this note now, I do so only when no more shot is fired from the opposite direction, once any more shot is fired, I will return with more shots. There are more facts on record, challenge me and let’s roll on papers. Shehu Bashir isn’t doing this for any social media fantasy, he is not talking for the world to read his “poor” English grammar, he neither likes too much public attention nor crave for any fame, he is doing this correctional therapy because, like many patriots, he is averse to anything retrogressive and will specifically do anything to protect the sanctity of the citadel that gave him everything.




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