A year after: Clampdown on Students’ Union activities continues in South Western Universities

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    —A year after: Clampdown on Students’ Union activities continues in South Western Universities

    YBTC NEWS—It has been over a year since the clampdown on activities of Students’ Union in some South Western Universities which gave rise to their domancy.

    YBTC News survey, reveals that over 6 South Western Universities’ students’ Union has been suspended as a result of peaceful protests staged by the union as regards the not so good state of their various institutions.

    OAU Ife

    The Students’ Union of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile- Ife was suspended as a result of the unruly behavior exercised by the Student leaders. The Management of the Varsity had suspended the Union leaders owing to the disagreement which ensued between the suspended Vice President, Jacob Tosin and the Director of Socials, Adedayo Emmanuel which led to the violent use of bottles.

    The management also stated that, the Union was suspended as a result of the forceful release of students under investigation from Police custody on October 6, and the unwarranted vandalising of people’s vehicles, particularly those of the Ekiti State chapter of the Nigerian Union of Journalists and members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers.

    The Management of the University is yet to provide a cogent explanation regards why the ban has not been lifted for a year now as against the several promises made by the management to revert the ban on the union’s activities.

    University of Ibadan

    In the same vein, the Students’ Union of the University of Ibadan were suspended as a result of a peaceful protest embarked upon by the Union Leaders and students of the Varsity at Large, demanding that the institution provide them with student identification cards, as promised months ago. In addition, the students also lamented about the university management’s indifference to their welfare.
    It seems the management of the University has no plans of bringing back the Union as they see them as a threat to their governance. Several calls has been put to the Vice Chancellor of the Varsity by our Correspondent but his responses are always Negative as they have no plans for the Future.

    University of Lagos

    For the University of Lagos,the Students Union Leaders of the University were suspended in August, 2016 over a peaceful protest which they embarked upon over the unavailability of water supply and erratic power of which they showed their grievances in a peaceful way.

    The Management however, have denied the allegations that the Union Leaders weren’t suspended based on that issue but were suspended because they violated the rules of social conduct in the Varsity by Vandalizing vehicles and locking down the gate of the University alongside the staff quarters.

    Ever since the disbandment of the Union, the Management hasn’t seemed it fit to lift the ban but instead.

    The implication of these unresolved issues is in no ones interest.
    The most pronounced reason for these ban on the students’ body borders on the protests staged by students of the different institutions.

    The Students Union Leaders of an institution are the bridges between the students and the management of the school. But with the absence of these bridges there is bond to be a void that’s needs to be filled to avoid anarchy.

    As stated in Section 11 of the Constitution, we have the Right to Freedom and Assembly. This states that, everyone has the right to associate with others and gather together for a common purpose

    Similarly, Article 11 allows us to protest peacefully, join unions and holds the powerful to account. It is also linked to Freedom of Expression as it applies to protests, marches and demonstrations, counter-demonstrations, press conferences, public and private meetings but it doesn’t protect intention.

    The Law shall not prevent the imposition of lawful restrictions on the exercise of these rights by members of the armed forces, of the police or of the administration of the state.
    These thus, calls for an urgent review.

    press conferences, public and private meetings but it doesn’t protect intention.

    The Law shall not prevent the imposition of lawful restrictions on the exercise of these rights by members of the armed forces, of the police or of the administration of the state.

    StakeHolders React

    Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife

    The Public Relation Officer of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife has shown reaction towards the Clampdown on the Student Union Activities in the varsity.

    Speaking with the Spokesperson of the Varsity, Mr Olanrewaju Abiodun who spoke to our correspondent has said the Student Union wasn’t proscribed but it was the Activities of the Central Executive Council (CEC) that was suspended.

    In his words, he said ” the union were not proscribed, we still have the Hall Executives, Departmental Executives but it was only the excesses of the Centeral Executive Council that was caught, there were not proscribed neither was their any clampdown on their activities ”

    “We see the Student Union Leaders as the Leaders of tomorrow and the school itself wants sanity to be ensured in the University Areas but when we have some students union leaders trying to destroy themselves just to exercise their right, that was why the University Management decide to stop them before they bring a public disgrace to the varsity” He said

    “The management is working tirelessly to ensure the CEC is brought back anytime soon but we need to put something’s in place before we can now announce officially to the students” he added

    University of Lagos

    A suspended Student Activist who spoke with our correspondent said the management have in plans to return back the Student Union. The Clampdown was as a result of a peaceful protest held as a result of poor welfarism in the Varsity.

    Speaking with the Suspended Student Activist, Adeyeye Olorunfemi, he said “the student are not in support of what the management wants inorder to bring the students union back. Presently the school has formed some groups which are caretaker group and council of Faculty presidents which comprises of all Faculty presidents. The plans of the management is to put the people they want in different post of the Student Union but not by Election which is the Student Choice ”

    ” All what the management wants to do is to Privatize the Student Union and if their is a loophole they would be the one to remove and replace with another person” he added

    University of Ibadan

    All efforts to reach with the Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Professor Idowu Olayinka and other top officials of the Varsity to get their reactions and as to know when the Student Union would be reinstated proved abortive as their lines were not reachable.

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