By Osagie Otabor, Akure

Joseph Afe Babalola University (JABU) Vice-Chancellor Prof. Kola Sonaike has said it was an act of irresponsibility to keep students at home despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prof. Sonaike said members of the Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU) could continue to kick against the reopening of university because their salaries would always be paid whether students are in campus or not.

He stated that the push by private universities for schools to open was not profit-driven but an act of responsibility.

Speaking on Monday at a pre-convocation news briefing, Prof. Sonaike said the institution carried out several innovations, including the building of isolation to ensure students do not contract COVID-19.

The V-C, who denied allegations that returning students would be made to pay for COVID-19 test, said a special monitoring unit has been set up in the campus to ensure staff and students observe COVID-19 safety protocols.

Sonaike stated that the institution would confer degrees of various distinctions to 430 students that graduated from its seven colleges.

He said 21 made First Class honours, 181 made Second Class Upper, 157 made Second Class Lower while 36 made Third Class.

Among those to be conferred with honorary degrees, according to Prof. Sonaike, are a former Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Oluseyi Petirin, Managing Director/CEO, First Registrar and Investor Services Limited Pastor Bayo Olugbemi, Chairman, House Committee on Public Procurement  Oluwole Oke and Chairman, House Committee on NDDC Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo.

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