The vice chancellor of the University of Ibadan (UI), Prof. Idowu Olayinka says it is not completely true that Aminu Zubairu spent 22 years pursing a doctorate degree before his death.

It was earlier reports that Zubairu, a lecturer in the department of mathematics at the university, committed suicide.

Zubairu, who was described as a brilliant lecturer, was said to have taken his own life out of depression and frustration, having spent 22 years attempting to get a PhD.

This information was however debunked by the university’s vice chancellor, who did confirm that Zubairu registered for a PhD 22 years ago, but he added that the deceased only registered for the first three sessions.

“It is not completely true that Mr. Aminu Othman Zubairu spent 22 years on his PhD programme. I have checked his personal file at the Postgraduate College,” Olayinka said.

“What we have been able to establish thus far is that he only registered for the first three academic sessions. In effect, his original registration would have lapsed technically nearly 19 years ago.

“Many candidates in that category do apply to reactivate their studentship. The impression being created, rather erroneously, is that the late colleague had been on his PhD for 22 years.

“The information at our disposal is to the contrary. At a time the issue of his voluntary resignation of employment was brought to my notice, I invited him to my office and we had fruitful discussions but the initiative did not yield any salutary outcome.

“In view of the wide negative publicity that this unfortunate incident has generated, and the embarrassment caused the University more so when most commentators have not be availed of the full information before drawing conclusions.

The VC has decided to set up an investigation panel to interrogate what must have transpired in the case.


Sylvester is an event manager and decorator. He is a trained extension agent and a development communicator, a freelance writer, drama minister and pastor.


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