The University of Calabar has launched an investigation into the allegation of sexual harassment made against Prof. Cyril Ndifon, the Dean of the Faculty of Law.
The accusation surfaced on Monday when students took to social media with a viral video, in which they accused Ndifon of engaging in sexual misconduct and harassment.
In the video, students from the faculty were depicted staging a determined protest at the office of the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Florence Obi.
Their placards bore inscriptions that demanded accountability and change, stating “Ndifon must go for our sanity,” “We are tired of buying law journals,” “We are tired of lecturers not attending classes,” and “Law girls are not your bonanza; Prof. Ndifon should stop grabbing us and others.”
Prof. Ndifon has however denied the allegations in an interview with an online news outlet CrossRiverWatch, alleging that the protest had been orchestrated by individuals within the faculty who harbored ill-will against him.
He said: “I don’t teach Year 2 or Year one students, so I don’t know why they have chosen to drag my name into the mud. This was why I said earlier that the allegations were lies, cooked from the pit of hell, just to destroy a reputation that I had spent decades building.”
The university’s spokesperson, Eyo Bassey, confirmed on Tuesday, that the institution’s management had engaged with the concerned parties involved. Bassey said: “By the end of today (Tuesday), we will issue a statement. Yesterday (Monday), the students came out with their protest, carrying placards, which you saw online bearing various inscriptions.”
“They were invited by the vice-chancellor. The staffers of the Faculty of Law were invited to come and address management as well as their senior faculty staff about whatever might have been their complaints. They spoke and raised a lot of issues.
“It is not even just about sexual allegations. There are all kinds of other issues they raised and management commended them for bringing the issues to their attention.”
This unfolding controversy underscores the crucial role that educational institutions play in addressing issues of alleged harassment and misconduct.
The university’s commitment to investigating and responding to these allegations highlights the importance of fostering a safe and inclusive environment for all students and staff. As the investigation unfolds, the university community and the broader public await further clarity on this matter.
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