UNILAG renaming, noble but illegal ~ Afe Babalola

Published:31 May, 2012

Afe Babalola
Former Pro-Chancellor and Chairman, Governing Council of the University of Lagos, Chief Afe Babalola (SAN) yesterday said the renaming of the institution after the late Chief Moshood Abiola was “noble” but illegal.

He said before the decision to change the name was taken, no amendment was made to the provisions of the University of Lagos Act.

President Goodluck Jonathan usurped the powers of the National Assembly by not seeking its backing, he said.

According to him, even though the motive was noble, the Federal Government followed an unconstitutional procedure.

He said such a decision would have been better effected if proper attention had been given to the provisions of the Constitution and the University of Lagos Act.

Babalola, who was Abiola’s lawyer, added that President Jonathan’s powers as visitor to the university did not include changing its name without recourse to the National Assembly.

In a statement, the senior advocate said many notable Nigerians who championed the call for the immortalisation of Abiola’s contribution to the current democratic dispensation were appalled at the manner with which the government about its decision. 

“It is my view that things could have been better handled,” he said.

To him, while it is proper to give honour where it is due, such must be done in accordance with the law. 

“Afterall respect for the law is an integral part of democracy itself,” Babalola said, and called for a review of the decision. 

“It is my hope that the authorities concerned will review their position and take appropriate step to do things in a lawful manner. 

“That to my mind would be the greatest honour to the late Bashorun MKO Abiola.”

Describing the renaming process as faulty, Babalola said: “It is pertinent to state that I do not entirely agree with the manner in which the government has gone about its decision.  

“To my mind, a decision to honour the sacrifice of a man such as the Late Bashorun MKO Abiola required much more thoughtfulness and thoroughness than that which the current decision seems to display. 

“I take this view in the light of the obvious illegality and unconstitutionality of the decision to change the name of the University of Lagos to Moshood Abiola University, Lagos.

 “The University is a creation of statute. 

“Everything relating to the University including its name, administration and control is provided and regulated by statute therefore necessitating that any action taken in respect of the University must comply with the provisions of the Law. 

“Therefore, the most important yardstick against which the decision must be measured is the provisions of the University of Lagos Act, Cap U9, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

“The Act provides for the establishment, incorporation and administration of the University among others. 

“Section 1 provides as follows: •’Incorporation and objectives of the University:

• There is hereby established a University to be known as the University of Lagos (in this Act referred to as “the University”) to provide courses of instruction and learning in the faculties of arts, law, medicine, science, education, commerce and business administration, engineering, and any other faculties which may, from time to time, be approved under this Act.

“•The University shall be a body corporate and shall have perpetual succession and a common seal.’

“The above reproduced section of the Law without equivocation states that the name of the University is ‘University of Lagos’. 

“This amply demonstrates that the name ‘University of Lagos’ is derived from an Act of the National Assembly.

“Any other name other than ‘University of Lagos’ would run contrary to the provisions of the Act.

“With the above in mind, it is not difficult to see that the name announced by President Jonathan is unknown to the University of Lagos Act. 

“This is so for the following reasons: Being an Act of the National Assembly, the provisions of the University of Lagos Act can only be amended by another Act of the National Assembly.

“Prior to the decision of the Federal Government to change the name of the University, no amendment was made to the provisions of the University of Lagos Act.  

“The decision of Mr. President ostensibly acting in concert with the Federal Executive Council, amounts to an usurpation of the powers of the National Assembly. 

“Section 4 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended confers Legislative Powers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on the National Assembly which consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives.”

Besides, Babalola said the powers vested in the President as visitor had their limits.

“They do not empower him to unilaterally direct or effect a change in the name of the University. 

“I state this for the following reasons: The powers of the visitor are as expressly contained in the University of Lagos Act. 

“It is settled that where power is vested in any individual or body, such body or individual cannot exceed the powers which had been so vested. To do so would be to act ultra vires.

“A careful perusal of the provisions of Section 16 of the Act will reveal that the exercise of the powers vested in the visitor of the University must be consistent with the provisions of the Act. 

“This is the direct purport of Section 16(3)(b) which requires bodies and persons comprised in the university to give effect to the instructions of the visitor which are consistent with the provisions of the Act.

“Clearly, a unilateral change in the name of the university from that stated in Section 1 of the Act cannot under any guise, be regarded as consistent with the provisions of the Act…

 “The powers vested in President Jonathan under Section 16 of the University of Lagos Act are not wide enough to support the decision of the Federal Government to change the name of the University of Lagos to Moshood Abiola University, Lagos.”

The Nation

  • Ahmed @alpha1marine

    Omg! How did we ended up with GEJ?

  • Alagbe Muyideen

    GEJ should just toe the path of honour, reverse this decision. Bt am sure he knws wat his doing.

  • FM

    It is a disgrace to act without law that govern a nation,been a

  • FM

    It is a disgrace to act without law that govern a nation,been a Dr do

  • FM

    He needs a good adviser in his cabinet,may be those in his office are famers only God knows.but despite this he need spiritual healing, ever since he has been supporting other nearby country(s)
    By sending troops, whereas bokoharam hv been killing many pple,since then I bliv his not capable of managing a nation wit his cabinet.pls GEJ were u not tot hw to follow protocol or an Act during ur days?pls reverse ur order.thank u.

  • Nike

    What do expect from a president that has only niger delta militants as ADVISERS

  • buy xanax online cheap no prescription xanax vs vicodin effects – xanax 0.25 mg effects

  • where to buy ambien online ambien 40 mg erowid – ambien cr online no prescription

  • diazepam half life diazepam system drug test – 5mg diazepam for dogs

  • can you buy valium online order valium no prescription – buy valium online no prescription canada

  • soma for sale back medication soma – canadian online pharmacy+soma

Related Posts

Recent Posts

Brazil inmates dug three tunnels out of Alcacuz jail

Police searching a prison in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Norte say they have found three unfinished escape tunnels. The discovery comes just days after at least 26 inmates were killed in a riot at the jail in the city of Natal. Officials said inmates at Alcacuz jail had taken advantage of heavy rains to dig the tunnels in the softened ground. But they insisted that none of them had been finished and that no prisoner had managed to...

I’m ready to help Gerrard become the best manager he can be – Klopp

Jurgen Klopp has labelled Steven Gerrard’s decision to join Liverpool’s Academy staff as “wonderful news for football” as he builds a base to enter management. The 36-year-old called time on a stellar playing career last November and will help shape his boyhood club’s next generation as a coach at the same youth system that developed his talents. The former Reds skipper will begin his duties at Kirkby in February, initially in a floating role, and Klopp commended Gerrard’s willingness to swerve...

Why Buratai Sued Premium Times – Army

The Nigerian Army on Monday said the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai, sued the Nigerian online newspaper, Premium Times, for libel after it failed to retract a story published on its medium. In a statement on Monday by the Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Sani Usman, the Army explained that the suit “is between the person of Lieutenant General TY Buratai and the Premium Times and not the Nigerian Army” adding that the case had...

JUST IN: LAUTECH receives N500 million to pay salaries – Vice Chancellor

The Vice-Chancellor of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, LAUTECH, Ogbomoso, Suleiman Gbadegesin, on Monday said the institution had received N500 million from Osun and Oyo State governments to pay the salary arrears owed workers.   Mr. Gbadegesin disclosed this in Osogbo when he appeared before the State House of Assembly to defend the university’s N9.9 billion budget for 2017.   He said the institution received alert of N250 million each from the two owner states.   While thanking Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun and his...

BREAKING: Donald Trump withdraws US from Trans-Pacific Partnership deal that covers 40 percent of world’s economy

US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order formally withdrawing the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, following through on a promise from his presidential campaign. "We've been talking about this for a long time," Trump said as he signed the executive order in an Oval Office ceremony on Monday. He also called the order a "great thing for the American worker". In the same ceremony, Trump also signed an order imposing a federal hiring freeze and a directive...

Moses Doing Great Job For Chelsea – Alonso

Chelsea wing-back Marcos Alonso has paid tribute to Super Eagles forward Victor Moses for his impact for the English Premier League leaders so far this term. Moses has been a regular in the Chelsea team this term and has been one of the key performers in Antonio Conte's 3-4-3 formation. The Nigeria international had previously struggled to make much of an impact at Stamford Bridge but seems to have blossomed under the former Juventus manager, scoring three goals in 21...

Zambian police married to foreigners warned: Your spouse could be a spy.

Police in Zambia have been banned from marrying foreigners, according to a memo by police inspector general Kakoma Kanganja circulating on social media. The memo, dated 11 January, said those who were already married to foreigners should declare this within a week. It said failure to do so would "attract disciplinary action". Police spokeswoman Esther Katongo said: "Issues of security are delicate. If not careful, spouses can be spies and can sell the security of the country." Ms Katongo told the BBC...

Okorocha Urges Igbos To Join APC.

The Imo state Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has urged his fellow citizens and Igbos in the south-east to register in large numbers with the All Progressives Congress (APC) during its ongoing nationwide registration of members. The Governor made the call at a meeting with APC members and state development council members at the Sam Mbakwe executive chambers in the government house in Owerri, the state capital.   He said that the All Progressives Congress in Imo state was hoping to register not less...

Nigerian Manufacturers Demand Review Of Government Polices.

The President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Mr Frank Udemba, has expressed concerns about some government policies which he says may hinder the development of the economy.   He said this at the Presidential Villa where government officials, manufacturers and members of the private sector met to discuss issues on how best to make the economy work in the interest of ordinary Nigerians.   Speaking the mind of most businessmen and women in the hall, Mr Udemba listed the Central Bank’s...

Ogun Police Arrest Suspected Serial Burglar.

The Ogun State Police Command has paraded a 40-year-old man suspected to be a serial burgler responsible for many robbery operations in Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital. Items found in his care include many television sets, generators, mobile phones and other items suspected to have been stolen. Parading the suspect, the Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Abimbola Oyeyemi said that the suspect was arrested after a tip off from members of the community. While assuring members of the general public of the...

Lawyers Protest Arrest, Detention Of Members By DSS

A group of lawyers under the aegis of Lawyers in Defense Of Democracy are protesting the continued detention of their members by the Department Of State Services (DSS).   They have called for the intervention of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).   Apart from asking for the release of their members, the group also called on the commission to ensure the disbandment of the Police probe panel into the Rivers State re-run elections killings.   According to the coordinator of the group, Agu...

26 Pupils Get Rewards For Excellence In Oyo State.

The Oyo State Government has rewarded 26 pupils from various schools who have represented the state in various National competitions for being good ambassadors. The State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Professor Adeniyi, presented the gifts to the 26 pupils for their excellent performances in Mathematical Association of Nigeria (MAN), Science Teachers Association of Nigeria (STAN) and Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) competitions. He said that there as no amount of time, energy and money that could be regarded as...

Ogun State Declares 396, Others Free Of Lassa Fever.

The Ogun Commissioner for Health Dr. Babtunde Ipaye, has said that 396 people have been declared free of Lassa Fever according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) standard, after being placed under surveillance. The persons were said to have had primary and secondary contacts with the Assistant Chief Nursing Officer of Federal Medical Centre (FMC) Idi- Aba in Abeokuta, who died of Lassa fever in December 2016. Ipaye also revealed that 19 close contacts to another new suspected Lassa fever case, came...

Wenger Charged for Misconduct by FA

The Football Association has charged Arsene Wenger for misconduct for allegedly using abusive language towards the fourth official in Sunday's encounter against Burnley. More to follow...

Committee Commends ECOWAS For Restoring Democracy In Gambia

The Committee For The Protection Of Peoples Mandate (CPPM), has commended the Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) for what they say is a restoration of Democracy in The Gambia.   The committee revealed this in a statement signed by the Executive Chairman, Nelson Ekujumi, titled: “Kudos To Ecowas For The Restoration Of Democracy In Gambia”.   It reads:   “The Committee for the Protection of Peoples Mandate (CPPM) whole heartedly congratulates and commends the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) for...

Australian Open: Serena Williams Defeats Strycova To Reach Quarter-Finals.

World number two, Serena Williams, has advanced to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open following a 7-5 6-4 win over Czech Barbora Strycova at Rod Laver Arena.   Williams was broken three times in the opening set and again when coasting to the finish line in the second.   However, she shifted up a gear when it counted to close out the match in one hour, forty six minutes.   Williams, bidding to win a record 23rd grand slam title in the professional era, has...

Gunmen kill man, injure another in Plateau.

Gunmen have shot and killed a man and injured another at a drinking pool in Alheri, Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State.   The spokesperson of the police in the state, Terna Tyopev, confirmed the incident in a telephone interview with PREMIUM TIMES on Monday.   Mr. Tyopev said the victim who survived the attack with bullet wounds revealed the identities of the attackers to the police.   “Information was received on the night of Saturday 21st January 2017 that Ifeanyi Ozue and...

Did Minister Babatunde Fashola Get It Wrong? – By Simbo Olorunfemi

We cannot, for the sake of some agreement and a rigid reading of the law, continue to short-change ourselves by not removing the hurdles in the way of off-grid solutions that will enable independent power plants set up, based on potential demand, to generate and distribute directly to customers without any go-between in form of a distribution company and an overbearing regulator. Starting out, Mr. Fashola seems to have gotten it wrong. From the outside, one would think his quick...

FG to launch free healthcare programme in Niger Delta – Minister

The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Usani Usani, says the Federal Government will soon embark on a free healthcare intervention scheme in the nine oil producing states as from next month. The minister made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, on Monday in Abuja. He said that the programme would be executed by his ministry in collaboration with the National Association of Urologists. Mr. Usani said the essence of the health programme was for the people...

N136 million fraud: Court reserves judgment in trial of NIMASA boss

A Federal High Court in Lagos, on Monday, reserved February 21 for judgment in a no case submission filed by ex-acting Director General of NIMASA, Calistus Obi, charged with N136 million fraud. The trial judge, Mojisola Olatoregun, fixed the date for judgment after hearing arguments from both defence and prosecuting counsels on an application for a no case submission. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had preferred an eight count charge against Mr. Obi Mr. Obi, who was also an Executive...

President Buhari re-nominates Magu as EFCC chairman

President Muhammadu Buhari has re-nominated Ibrahim Magu for confirmation as chairman of Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, EFCC. Multiple sources knowledgeable about the development, including presidency officials, have spoken with PREMIUM TIMES on the re-nomination. The Senate had in December last year declined to confirm Mr. Magu as the substantive chairman of EFCC, ending months of delay and rancorous power-play involving influential senators, the State Security Service, SSS, and officials of the presidency opposed to Mr. Magu’s headship of the agency. The spokesperson for...