Professor Nathaniel Oke Eriemo, the Head of the Department of Economics at Taraba State University, has been removed by the University management following a report by FIJ on how the department allegedly colluded with Hosea Rimande and Dr Grace Akor, class representatives of the post graduate section, to extort students to the tune of N3.3million.
He has been replaced with Dr. Idris Miftahu.
Many students told FIJ that during internal presentation of theses, more than 55 students were forced to pay N10,000, amounting to N550,000 for the ‘entertainment’ of internal examiners. Receipts were not issued and there were no records of how funds were expended.
It was also gathered that in addition to the mandatory payment of N30,500 to the school’s coffers, post graduate students were also instructed to pay N50,000 to ‘entertain’ external examiners for theses presentation. Similarly, no receipt was issued to those who paid.
About N2,750,000 would be made if 55 students paid the N50,000 illegal fee.
Rimande and Akor supervised the collection of the money but denied that such fee was illegal and that they were colluding with Professor Eriemo.
Rimande said that students should expect to spend money and that the payment was to “help ourselves and the department”. He later sent a text message threatening FIJ.
Professor Eriemo was aggressive and refused to give comments when contacted.
A source said that FIJ’s report was read by persons high in the government of Taraba State, who instructed the university’s Vice Chancellor to resolve the matter.
“At Thursday’s Senate meeting at the school, the Vice Chancellor mentioned it at the meeting but with no particular reference to Professor Eriemo’s name. The department was mentioned with reference to such behaviour,” the source said.
When contacted, Sanusi Sa’ad, the Public Relations Officer of the University, said he was not aware of that Professor Eriemo had been removed from office. He said that if the school wanted him to make an announcement, he would be informed.
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