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OAU sexual bargain scandal: I am ready to face any panel - Monica Osagie denies shunning invitation

OAU sexual bargain scandal: I am ready to face any panel - Monica Osagie denies shunning invitation

- Miss Monica Osagie, the student involved in the OAU sex-for-marks scandal, denied shunning an invitation to appear before a panel set up by the institution

- She challenged the university to provide evidence that she was invited to appear before the panel

- Osagie said she is ready to appear before the panel anytime she is invited

Miss Monica Osagie, the student at the centre of a sex-for-mark scandal rocking the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, has denied shunning an invitation by the panel probing the audio tapes of her conversation with Professor Richard Akindele, who demanded sex from her.

Osagie reportedly made the denial via her proxy, Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, the founder of Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre, a non-profit organisation, PM News reports.

Akiyode-Afolabi said that the university did not at any point invite Osagie to face the panel.

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She challenged the university to bring evidence that she was formally invited by any means to appear before the panel.

Her words: “Before the matter went viral, the university was aware of it and they did not do anything. If the case did not go viral, the university probably would not have done anything and it would have been swept under the carpet.

“I think that we should focus more on whether the act of that professor amounts to sexual harassment, whether it was a breach of the school’s code of conduct, whether it was a breach of terms of contract for lecturers or whether he abused the relationship that should exist between lecturers and students.”

Akiyode-Afolabi further said that the university should be responsible and responsive in addressing issues of sexual harassment because Osagie is ready to come out whenever the university extends a proper invitation to her.

“Let the university do what they are supposed to do by giving her proper invitation. They have all her records because she is their student. The panel has never invited her, so when the panel invites her today, she would come," she said.

She noted that even though Osagie made the recording to serve as evidence against her lecturer, “she didn’t release the audio. She got the evidence and it was given to one or two people when she was seeking for help. So definitely one of them released the audio, and she cannot be blamed for it.”

Akiyode-Afolabi added: “We are not comfortable with the university saying they invited her when they didn’t invite her. Her name is already out, the whole world is aware so we cannot say because of security and safety, we won’t allow the truth to prevail.

“I think society should focus on what really happened, and whether such should happen in higher institutions of learning and not about what she did.”

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Meanwhile, the vice-chancellor of OAU, Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede, had earlier said that only the suspended lecturer honoured the panel's invitation while Osagie neither showed up before the panel to defend her case nor wrote a formal complaint to the institution to defend the leaked audio.

“The university is making efforts to ensure that Miss Osagie appears before the investigative committee so that it can hear her side of the case and promptly submit its final report,’’ Prof Ogunbodede said in a statement.

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