The Southwest Zone of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has urged administration of the region’s tertiary institutions to ensure that all Student Unions are restored where they have been disbanded.
The student body specifically voiced its displeasure with the ongoing delay in the reinstatement of the Student Union Governments at the Federal College of Education Special, Oyo (SPED), and the University of Lagos (UNILAG), in a statement by the Coordinator, NANS South-West, Mr. Alao John. They particularly gave the administration at UNILAG and SPED Oyo till today to declare any actions that would help restore a new Students Union leadership at these institutions.
In addition, they gave The Polytechnic Ibadan and Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) a three-week deadline to hold new elections to elect a new group of students leaders to run the Student Union Government in these universities.Alao claims that the ongoing delay violates the students’ right to association as stated in Chapter 4 Section 40 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria’s Constitution, as amended.
The statement read: “By delaying the reinstatement of these Students Union, it’s clear that University managements are doing a great disservice to Students whom they have an obligation to teach, build, mentor and empower with the needed skills, exposure and opportunities that would set them on course to contribute meaningfully to the growth of our country.
“We recall a meeting with the Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos some weeks back, where she assured Us of her willingness to explore the possibility of the reinstatement of the students union and would like to call on her to truly honor her words given to us.
“If ASUU, NASU, SAANU can exist on these campuses, there’s no logical reason for SUGs to remain proscribed. We want Student Rights to be protected and their agitations heard just as it’s applicable to other Unions in tertiary institutions.
“We also want to call on the management of The Polytechnic Ibadan and Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) to conduct student union elections in their institutions, because it is long overdue and Students are ready to elect a new set of Leaders that will oversee their affairs for the academic session.
“Having consulted widely with Student stakeholders and Leaders across the South West Zone, we hereby issue a Three (3) Weeks Ultimatum to the Management of UNILAG and SPED Oyo to announce necessary measures in place that would aid the reinstatement of a new Students Union leadership in these institutions and a Three Weeks Ultimatum to The Polytechnic Ibadan and Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) for the conduct of fresh elections to usher in a new set of students leaders to steer the affairs of the Student Union Government in these institutions.
“Failure to comply would pitch these institutions against the generality of students in the southwest and Nigeria at large, for we consider an injustice to one, as an injustice to all of us. We would use every legitimate means to sustain our demands, including occupying these institutions until our demands are met. We believe that a confrontation with students can be avoided and we call on the Federal Minister for Education, the Media and well meaning Nigerians to prevail on these institutions to heed our demands.”