ASUU Moves Against Minister Pantami, Sets Up Probe Committee

ASUU Moves Against Minister Pantami, Sets Up Probe Committee

  • The controversy over the appointment of Dr Isa Pantami as a professor in FUTO has taken a new turn as the Academic Staff Union of Universities reacts
  • ASUU announced that it has set up a committee to probe the appointment of the minister by the institution
  • According to ASUU, the outcome of the probe by the new committee would be made public for all Nigerians

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has kicked against the appointment of the minister of communication and digital economy, Isa Pantami as a Professor of cyber security at the Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO).

Channels Television reports that ASUU during a press briefing on Monday, November 15, said a committee has been set up to probe Pantami's controversial appointment.

Ali Pantami
ASUU has set up a committee to probe Dr Pantami's appointment as professor by FUTO. Photo: Dr Isa Pantami
Source: Facebook

Speaking during the briefing, the ASUU's president, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, said the committee is expected to probe the circumstances leading to the appointment of Pantami as a professor in FUTO.

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Procedure for appointment of professor position in FUTO

Osodeke said Pantami's appointment followed advertisements in some national dailies on September 2, 2020.

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He said the minister had purportedly applied for the position and thereafter got it.

He added that the minister was only promoted to the rank of Lecturer 1 in 2013 before he left the country.

Also, Premium Times reported that Osodeke said the minister allegedly skipped three positions – Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor, and Professor.

According to him, each of the three positions has at least three years of experience requirements.

He added that Pantami had left the academic ecosystem to become a director-general at the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in 2016.

Osodeke said:

“There are serious doubt and unanswered questions bordering on the qualification of Dr Isa Pantami for the position.

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“In view of the foregoing and having rejected FUTO Committee’s report, NEC set up an independent committee to go to FUTO to investigate fully and get all the data so that we can put it to the public, the role of FUTO on how this person who spent three years during Lecturer 1 and Professor, how did he become a professor."

Osodeke noted that the outcome of the probe would be made public.

Pantami's controversial appointment as professor

Meanwhile, previously reported that Pantami was appointed a professor by FUTO in September 2021.

Pantami was promoted to the new academic ranks during FUTO's 186th meeting in Owerri, the capital of Imo state.

During the meeting, the institution's council also approved the recommendation of the Academic Staff Appointment and Promotions Committee.

FUTO cleared over the growing controversy

Also, a panel constituted by ASUU had cleared FUTO over Pantami’s appointment as a professor of Cybersecurity.

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The panel according to its report, requested the management of the university to take steps that would protect FUTO’s integrity and correct some false statements against the school.

In addition, legal action was one of the measures recommended by the panel so as to deal with those planning to dent the image of the university.


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