The management of the University of Calabar has suspended Cyril Ndifon, the embattled dean of the Faculty of Law accused of sexual harassment.
The suspension was announced on Thursday in a letter signed by the varsity’s registrar, Gabriel Egbe.
Part of the letter stated: “Please refer to our letter Ref UC/REG/DISC.45A dated August 14, 2023, on your alleged violation of the provisions of the extant laws and policies of the University and your response to the said letter which was dated 16th August, 2023.
“The Vice Chancellor has gone through your written representations and is not satisfied with your explanations.
“She has therefore directed that you be relieved of your position as Dean, Faculty of Law and placed on suspension while the matter is referred to a panel that will be set up to investigate these allegations.
“The relief of position as Dean, Faculty of Law, and suspension from official duties takes effect from August 17, 2023 You are to hand over all University property in your possession, including all official responsibilities presently handled by you to the Sub-Dean of the Faculty before vacating office.
“You are to stay away from the university premises except while responding to an invitation from the panel investigating these allegations.”
The authorities of the institution on Wednesday began an investigation into the allegations against Ndifon.
A viral video on social media had shown the students of the faculty storming the office of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Florence Obi, bearing placards with inscriptions such as, “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.”
In nine years, the management of the University of Calabar has suspended Ndifon twice over alleged sexual harassment of female students.
In an earlier interview granted to journalists, Ndifon had vehemently denied the allegations, claiming that the so-called protest by the law students was masterminded by some persons in the faculty who had sworn to pull him down.
Ndifon claimed that the allegations from the students were barefaced lies aimed at tarnishing his image.
“Since I defeated some persons in an election that was keenly contested to emerge as Dean of the Faculty, it hasn’t been easy. I had skipped several booby traps.
“These allegations are baseless and masterminded by my detractors, who had vowed to ensure that my image is dragged through the mud just because I won the faculty elections twice.
“If you look at the placards, you will discover that the placards have one person’s handwriting. Again, how come the protesters know that we were going to hold a meeting with the Vice Chancellor if it is not the handiwork of an insider?”
Ndifon alleged that the LAWSAN president had cajoled some students to go for the said meeting with the Vice Chancellor at her office, only to dish out placards bearing false representations about the Dean and ask his colleagues to chant slogans that berated my personality.
“This won’t work because colleagues of mine who are bent on tarnishing my reputation just to destroy me. The question is where are the victims of the sexual harassment?”