The Osun State Government has expressed shock over the suit filed by the joint unions of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) to stop the auditing of the university’s accounts, as recommended by the visitation panel set up to investigate and find lasting solution to the crisis that has crippled the institution, saying LAUTECH operates 97 different accounts.
The government called on parents, students and other stakeholders to prevail and plead with the unions to stop frustrating sincere steps of owner governments to get LAUTECH back on track, saying it was not happy and uncomfortable with the prolonged strike that has kept the Nigeria’s future leaders at home.
Osun State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Adelani Baderinwa, in a press statement on Sunday, said the state government found it shocking, unheard of and counter-productive, the suit filed by the unions at the Oyo State High Court.
Baderinwa explained that the auditing of the LAUTECH, Ogbomoso accounts was recommended by the Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) led visitation panel, and the two owner states had appointed a reputable accounting firm, KPMG firm to do the job.
He added that the LAUTECH unions, apart from chasing out the KPMG workers in the university, have persistently been working against the recommendation of the Olanipekun panel, except where the owner states are asked to raise fund.
The commissioner who noted that the owner states eager to resolve issues involved in the institution’s crisis urged the unions to be sincere and support the owner states in their bid to get the school back on track, describing the suit by the unions as unpatriotic and ill-conceived.
According to Baderinwa, contrary to submission by the unions, the owner states have effective contractual agreement with KPMG on the forensic auditing job.
He also explained that, contrary to Nigeria Senate’s assumption, there is no crisis as to the ownership of LAUTECH, maintaining that the Supreme Court has clearly stated the owners as Osun and Oyo states according to a 2012 judgment of the apex court.
Baderinwa said: “The last time LAUTECH accounts were audited was in 2012, and a sum of N400 million was in question then. LAUTECH has 97 different accounts at this time of Treasury Single Account policy. The Wole Olanipekun panel recommended auditing of the university’s accounts as a way to address the crisis holistically.
“The Osun and Oyo states entered into effective contractual agreement with KPMG, a reputable auditing firm. KPMG workers were harassed and chased out of the university by the unions. The unions have also gone to court to stop the forensic auditing as directed by the visitor of the institution.
“It worths noting that the two owner states have committed a total sum of N13.626Billion to the University since 2011 aside over N10 Billion that has come to the University as TETFUND and NEEDS as well as over N12 Billion declared as IGR for about 5 years now and we deserve every right to find out the way the money was spent.
“We wonder what the unions stand to gain by approaching court to stop the auditing. Do they have something to hide? How could they militate against a genuine and transparent move to get LAUTECH out of the unpleasant situation? We make bold to say that the unions’ action is unbecoming of a group of academicians and patriotic workers of the university. We appeal to them to give peace a chance”