Minister of Education, Professor Tahir Mamman, has warned members of the academia and the university community over matters of sexual harassment on campuses, maintaining that the Federal Ministry of Education will deal decisively with perpetrators of such acts.
The Minister gave the warning while addressing members of the press on Thursday in his office in Abuja, when he received the report of the committee on alleged sexual harassment by Professor Cyril O. Ndifo, Dean, faculty of law of the University of Calabar.
Professor Mamman said sexual harassment is a serious criminal offence and must be dealt with decisively, when and whenever it occurs, adding that the Federal Ministry of Education will do everything humanly possible to stem the ugly tide in our institutions of higher learning.
He noted that the offence of sexual harassment is damaging and must be eliminated at all cost, adding that all hands must be on deck to tackle the menace in our educational system.
Professor Mamman maintained that the administration of President Bola Tinubu is out to protect the vulnerable groups within the country’s educational system.
While reiterating that he will invoke the long arm of the law to ensure that perpetrators are punished, the Minister added that no one will be allowed to take advantage of the vulnerable groups.
The Minister disclosed that sexual offences units will be established in the Ministry and all institutions of higher learning to deal with the menace.
Earlier in the presentation of her report, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Calabar, Prof. Florence Banku Obi told the Minister that the university has followed all due processes in handling the matter including the suspension of the suspect, appropriate queries and setting up of a disciplinary committee to hear all parties.
In order to ensure a very high degree of transparency, the Vice-Chancellor said, the Public Complaints Commission, Nigeria Bar Association, International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, the Chief Judge of the Student’s Union High Court as well as seven civil society organizations were brought on board the committee as observers.