The University of Education, Winneba, has justified the dismissal of the Nigerian English Professor on Sabbatical, Augustine Uzoma Nwagbara, following his widely criticized comments.
This comes after the University of Ghana, where he once served as a visiting professor, issued a statement to dissociate itself from the derogatory remarks he made about the school in a video that has gone viral on social media.
The Professor has already been cautioned for offensive conduct conducive to the breach of peace, after he was arrested and granted bail by the police CID.
Professor Nwagbara was heard in the video recorded in Winneba, allegedly inciting some Nigerians against Ghanaians in the wake of rising concerns about the alleged involvement of some Nigerians in some kidnapping incidents in Ghana.
Public Relations Officer for the University of Education, Winneba, Ernest Azutiga told Citi News the professor was given a fair hearing, and that he apologized for the comments, although he claimed portions of the video were doctored.
“It is not a case of national anger. It is a case of what is contained in the video that is circulating. The Professor himself has said what is in the video is incriminating except that he is saying that the video has been doctored but during the interrogation, there were inconsistencies and he apologized. He insisted that those comments were not a full reflection of what happened on the day.”
The school sacked the Professor over comments he made in a video that has since gone viral.
Prof. Nwagbara was arrested on Tuesday but later granted bail for allegedly inciting the Nigerian community in Ghana to devise strategies that will destroy Ghana’s image internationally.
[contextly_sidebar id=”EOk6K45HeV7V3Bm4jtoYA80blg8lFyot”]In a statement issued on Wednesday, the University said the comments by the lecturer were inimical to the country’s educational sector, hence his dismissal.
“The University is highly disturbed by the huge embarrassment his unguarded statement has brought to the institution, the Ministry of Education, and indeed, Ghana as a whole. The University after subjecting Prof. Augustine Uzoma Nwagbara to the internal disciplinary process finds him culpable of gross misconduct and has, accordingly dismissed him.”
The University said, although Prof. Nwagbara has been on sabbatical leave from its Department of Applied Linguistics since October 2018, his comments after it set up an internal disciplinary process observed that the utterances were ‘ unsavoury, unethical and damning about the country, its history as well as its educational system. The University totally dissociates itself from the grossly irresponsible comments and condemns it in no uncertain terms.”
“The University apologises to Ghanaians for Prof. Nwagbara disparaging remarks about this country’s educational system and further indicates that the comment was full of factual inaccuracies”, portions of the statement added.
What the Prof. said
In the video, the said professor also allegedly admonished the students to use the Nigerian media to paint Ghana black to the international community.
According to the Professor, Nigeria already has a bad image mainly because of how they have been branded by others, especially by Ghana, so it is time to reciprocate that by coming up with innovative ideas and strategies.
Disregard ‘mischievous’ claims by Nigerian professor – UG
The University of Ghana earlier dissociated itself from the controversial comments made by a visiting Professor.
The university, in a statement signed by its Director of Public Affairs, Stella A. Amoa, described the comments as mischievous and urged the public to treat the video with the contempt it deserves.
“The claims Professor Nwagbara makes in the video relating to the University’s sources of income, students fees, etc. are incorrect and do not in any way represent the true facts and figures of the University’s income and state of affairs. The University of Ghana dissociates itself from the claims Professor Austin Nwagbara makes in the video which we find as mischievous and intended to mislead the public and harm the reputation of the University. The public is advised to treat the contents of the said video with the contempt it deserves,” the statement added.