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US-Based Scholar Challenges FUTO ASUU to Sue Him over Appointment of Pantami as Professor

US-Based Scholar Challenges FUTO ASUU to Sue Him over Appointment of Pantami as Professor

A US-based Nigerian scholar, Professor Farooq Kperogi, has challenged the Federal University of Technology, Owerri branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to file a lawsuit against him in any court over his persistent criticism of the university’s ‘questionable’ appointment of Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami as a professor.

FUTO appointed Nigeria’s minister of communications and digital economy as a professor in a way that has raised so mush questions, and Kperogi has maintained that the minister was not deserving of the appointment.

FUTO ASUU recently reacted (read the full reaction here) by declaring that the minister went through all necessary procedures before he was appointed a Professor of Cybersecurity in the School of Information and Communication Technology (SICT) by the Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO).

According to the local chapter of ASUU, Pantami’s application scaled six hurdles before his appointment by the institution’s Governing Council.

Besides, the body said external assessors were engaged to examine the minister’s publications as criteria for getting appointed.

ASUU said its panel  “strongly recommends that the university management should as a matter of urgency take appropriate actions, including legal action, against those who deliberately try to drag the image and reputation of FUTO to the mud.”

Kperogi reacted to this recommendation in a Facebook post, saying “OK, I am waiting for their lawsuit. Please, please and pretty please, sue me!”

Read his full post below:

FUTO ASUU’s Fraudulent “Clearing” of Pantami’s Fraudfessorship

By Farooq Kperogi

This is a quick, hurried response. A friend just called my attention to a news story in today’s Daily Trust about the FUTO branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) saying Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami’s appointment as “professor” of cybersecurity followed due process and that external assessors (whom they didn’t name) found his publications to be worthy of “promointment” (my coinage for promotion and/or appointment since the dolts at FUTO can’t decide what they have done) to the rank of professor.

These guys are comedians. Only that their comedy is humorless and fraudulent. Here are the issues. FUTO’s registrar had told the Nigerian Tribune that Pantami told FUTO that he was an “associate professor” at the Islamic University in Madinah before his relocation to Nigeria, and that Pantami’s promointment to a fraudfessorship in cybersecurity was a consequence of his last academic position. But Pantami lied, and FUTO is either too feckless or too compromised to catch his obvious lie.

In the last article he wrote while at the Islamic University in Madinah in January 2016 titled “The Importance of Identity Management Systems in Developing Countries” (which he co-authored with a Yusuf Abubakar at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University) before resigning and taking up a government appointment, he self-identified as “Asst Professor,” which is the short form of “Assistant Professor.”

Dr. Abdulaziz Tijjani called attention to the disconnect between Pantami’s last article before he accepted a government position where he identified his rank as “Asst Professor” and his fraudulent edit of his Researchgate profile to indicate that he was an “Associate Professor.”

Here’s a screenshot of the article which, by the way, is a garbage-in-garbage-out, pay-to-play, predatory article with zero editing or peer review.Farooq Kperogi, US-Based Scholar, FUTO ASUU, Isa Ali Pantami, Professor

And that leads to me to the next point, which FUTO’s incompetent and compromised ASUU panel glossed over in their so-called “investigation.” And that is that they did not officially write to the Islamic University of Madinah that supposedly promoted Pantami to the rank of associate professor after only two years of teaching there.

Well, I wrote to the university. Although I’m yet to get a formal response from the management of the school after two attempts, perhaps because I’m an individual, I did get across to some of Pantami’s former colleagues.

They confirmed to me that Pantami’s last rank at the university was an “Assistant Professor” and that he hadn’t qualified to be promoted to the next rank because he hadn’t met the minimum requirements. To be promoted to an associate professor at the school, they told me, you need a minimum of four peer-reviewed SCOPUS-indexed journal articles. Pantami had zero.

His articles were published in predatory journals, which are worthless in all decent schools. Some of Pantami’s colleagues are still assistant professors as I write this. His former department has a list of faculty publications on its website, which one of his former colleagues directed me to. I checked the years 2014 through 2016. None of Pantami’s fraudulent articles was listed there, obviously because they aren’t peer-reviewed or published in SCOPUS-indexed journals.

So, which publications of Pantami’s did FUTO’s external assessors evaluate? The same 10 publications on Google Scholar 80 percent of which are self-evidently low-quality, poorly edited, predatory journal articles that no self-respecting university would accept as scholarship? FUTO’s fraud is way worse than we think. I think it has truly earned my rechristening it as Fraudsters’ University of Technology!

The obviously rubber-stamped ASUU panel reportedly “strongly recommends that the University management should as a matter of urgency take appropriate actions, including legal action, against those who deliberately try to drag the image and reputation of FUTO to the mud.” Hahaha! FUTO dragged its reputation to the mud all by itself unaided.

These guys are obviously not just comical frauds, they are also pitifully lowbrow illiterates! Sue people for calling out daylight intellectual fraud? In what planet do these philistines live? OK, I am waiting for their lawsuit. Please, please and pretty please, sue me!

 

Share your thoughts on the story with Nigerian Sketch in the comments section below.

Faruk Khalil
Faruk Khalilhttps://nigeriansketch.com/
Khalil Faruk (Deputy Editor-in-Chief), has a Bachelors and Master's degree in Political Science and has worked as a reporter, features editor and Deputy Editor-in-Chief respectively in a leading Nigerian daily. He has undergone trainings in journalism, photo journalism and online journalism within and outside Nigeria.

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