Face the music: Rector to pay compensation for celebrating professor’s departure

Published 08.08.2017 13:25

A former university rector was ordered to pay 5,000 Turkish liras ($1,415) as compensation for hiring musicians to celebrate a professor's retirement.

Professor Alper Akınoğlu, the former rector of Çukurova University, was reportedly on bad terms with retired professor Rıza Kanber, who accused Akınoğlu of unscientific practices and discrimination.

"I will make people play drum and zurna the day you retire," Akınoğlu reportedly said, a Turkish idiom meaning to send someone off with a flourish of trumpets.

Two musicians performed on Kanber's retirement day, causing several faculty members to become angry and dismiss the musicians. The university's press office, however, claimed that it was a "gesture and surprise."

Kanber launched a lawsuit claiming public humiliation, while Akınoğlu asserted that he had nothing to do with the incident.

A local court sentenced Akınoğlu to pay TL 5,000 in material damages, which was appealed and overturned by a chamber of the Supreme Court of Appeals. When the court upheld its decision, the General Assembly of the Supreme Court of Appeals confirmed the sentence.

Turkey's Higher Education Board (YÖK) previously issued a non-prosecution decision on the same case, which was confirmed by the Council of State.

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