The management of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, on Wednesday said it had commenced investigations into the allegations of request for sex levelled against a lecturer, Olabisi Olaleye, by a female student, Motunrayo Afolayan.
Afolayan is a 400- level student in the Department of International Relations in the Faculty of Administration of the university where Olaleye teaches.
This fresh allegation is coming after a professor of Accounting, Richard Akindele, was accused and convicted for sexually harassing a female student, Monica Osagie, in 2018.
Akindele, who demanded sex from Miss Osagie to help improve her grades, has since been dismissed from the university.
Besides, the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission took him to court where the randy lecturer was convicted and sentenced to two years’ imprisonment.
Speaking with The PUNCH on the fresh allegation on Wednesday, the Public Relations Officer of OAU, Abiodun Olarewaju, explained that when the incident was reported last year, the management immediately set up a panel to investigate it.
He, however, said even while the report of the panel was still being expected, the management had placed the lecturer on half salary.
“The lecturer has appeared before a panel, headed by Prof. Yetunde Ajibade, the provost of the Postgraduate College. The lecturer appeared and the student also appeared before the panel.
“The panel has not concluded its findings but the lecturer has been placed on half salary pending the submission of report of the panel.
“This is a clear signal that the OAU management will not condone any act of sexual harassment, sexual intimidation or any other form of intimidation or sexual assault.
“That was why when she (the student) lodged a complaint with the authorities, irrespective of the fact that her result had been released, the university still set up the panel to investigate the matter,” Olarewaju said.
On why the lecturer was placed on half salary when the panel had not concluded its investigations, Olarewaju said he could not provide any reason for that.
However, a top source close to the panel said, “The university took the decision because from our preliminary investigation, a prima facie case was established against the lecturer and in that circumstance, the best thing to do is to place him on half salary.
“But if at the end of the case, the panel gives him a clean bill of health, his salaries will be released and if otherwise, the rule will be applied and the rule is dismissal because lecturers are supposed to be good role model, and loco parentis to our students. Or is it right for a father to sleep with her daughter?”
On how a prima facie case was established against him, the source said the evidence provided by the female student “was convincing.”
Though the source did not give details, another source said Afolayan presented a voice recording of where the lecturer was telling her that she would not pass his course until he slept with her, among other amorous comments.
Asked to confirm this, Olarewaju declined, saying details might be made public after the panel submitted its report.
“But I can assure you that the OAU, will through this case, be sending a clear signal to the public that our students are our children and we have the moral burden to treat this issue as objectively as possible. Justice will be done,” he said.