There is uncertainty over the Eastern Palm University, EPU, Ogboko, in Imo State,renamed Kingsley Ozumba Mbadiwe varsity, as the State government and authorities of the citadel of learning are at logger heads
On Wednesday, the Vice Chancellor of the varsity, Prof Tila Badejo, said that the school was closed to safeguard the lives of students and staff, as well as the properties of the varsity.
According to him, the institution took the decision following the ownership crisis of the institution between Senator Rochas Okorocha and Governor Hope Uzodimma.
Senator Okorocha had set up the university when he was governor of Imo State, claiming 90% ownership of the school, while the state government retained 10%. Governor Hope Uzodimma kicked against it, as the Imo State House of Assembly revoked Okorocha’s ownership of the university and renamed it K.O Mbadiwe varsity.
Prof Badejo told newsmen “The recent visit by the Imo State Commissioner for Education ordering students to leave the premises was unsettling for the Institution. The recent removal of the university’s entrance billboard by the Imo State Government and it’s replacement with the proposed renamed K.O Mbadiwe university by the government aided armed policemen is simply one action too many.
But the State Commissioner for Education, Bernard Ikegwuoha advised students and staff of the institution to disregard the directive of the Vice Chancellor.
Part of his statement reads “It has come to the notice of Imo State Government that an unauthorized and unknown person has issued a press release suspending all academic activities at the Kingsley Ozumba Mbadiwe University (formerly Eastern Palm University) Ogboko, Ideato South LGA, for the 2020/2021 academic session.
“All staff, students, parents, guardians, stakeholders and the general public are advised to disregard such illegal, unauthorized and unlawful press release and go about their normal and legitimate academic activities.