Court Dismisses Don’s Exam Fraud Suit Against University Of JOS!!

Federal High Court sitting in Jos on Thursday dismissed a case brought before it by a graduate assistant in the Department of Languages and Linguistics of the University of Jos against the institution bordering examination fraud and irregularity.
The erstwhile lecturer had dragged the university to court, alleging illegal termination of her appointment and intimate harassment among others.
Having reviewed the reliefs and claims sought by the plaintiff, Mrs. Augustina Otori, and the counter claims by the university, Justice Ambrose Allagoa, in his judgement, said that the agreement between the plaintiff with the university did not follow due process.
According to Justice Allagoa, the termination of her appointment as a graduate assistant by the university could not be questioned because “unconfirmed employee does not enjoy the permanency of an employmentwhich a confirmed employee enjoys. The discretion to terminate or not cannot be questioned because the law is that an employee on probation isa temporary staff by virtue of terms of employment.”
The court held that the award of a degree or certificate by any institution is an exclusive preserve of the institution, adding that any attempt by any court, including the Supreme Court, to dabble into the academic, administrative and domestic affairs of the university will lead to interference and strip the authority and power conferred on the university by statutes.
Justice Allagoa said, “The court cannot and will not usurp the functions of the Senate, the Council and the Visitor of a university.” He therefore dismissed the petition and made no orders as to costs.
Reacting to the verdict, counsel to the plaintiff, Pius Akubo (SAN), said thecourt had delivered its verdict, declining to grant the reliefs sought by the plaintiff.
“With all due respect to the court, we feel dissatisfied with the judgement just delivered because we believe it does not correctly reflect the current state of the law. We believe very firmly that the plaintiff’s appointment is covered by statute and therefore no individual no matter how highly placed in the university can willy-nilly disengage her without formalities.
“Beyond this, we pleaded fraud and we ventilated overwhelming evidence in support of fraud regarding her academic scripts. But the defendants tendered examination scripts with incongruous dates with questionable handwriting with amazing disparities bearing headings that have no direct relationship with the main campus of the University of Jos. So that hook, line and sinker, we are able to discharge the requisite burden of propaganding fraud as pleaded and particularised in this case,” Akubo stressed.
According to Akubo, the enabling statute makes it very clear that even if somebody’s employment is a temporary employment, he is entitled to notice before disengagement. “She was never given any formal notice. Shewas never disengaged. It was confirmed by their own witnesses that she is a senior staff of the university and the enabling law is very clear that a senior staff can never be disengaged unless by the approval of the Council of the university. No such approval was produced before the court.
“So that, to all intents and purposes, she is unjustifiably denied of her rights as she is entitled to remedy because the law is that wherever there is a wrong, there must be a remedy.”

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