In a new statement entitled: NANS ISSUES 48 HOURS ULTIMATUM TO UNIVERSITY OF IBADAN VICE CHANCELLOR, PROF. ABEL IDOWU OLAYINKA TO MEET OUR DEMANDS,’ the National Association of Nigeria Students (NANS) has threatened a ‘mass action’ against the Management of University of Ibadan (UI).
The release, which was signed by the Chairman of the association, Olujuwon Asubiojo Marshall, noted the current ban on motorcycles as well as the suspension of the student union and some student leaders. It declared that the management remains guilty of ‘injustice and an assault to students’ legitimate rights and entitlements.’
“Prior to this conclusion, we have humbly approached the university leadership.
“We have honourably sought for solutions. We have written the Vice-Chancellor, made media appeals, made press statements calling his attention to these demands.
“NANS, Oyo state believes we have served enough diplomacy in this matter and we are so much resolute in ensuring our demands are met.”
The body further stated that their demands are in the interest of students and that they have ‘reviewed’ the language of the Vice-Chancellor of the university, noting that the management is not ready to accede to requests by the student body.
Thus, they have resolved to ensure that their demands are met for the sake “Of fairness and justice.”
The statement also threatened that if the management still fails to honour the demands made, the “University of Ibadan should expect what the strength of Nigerian students is,” while also notifying “UI-tes, and Nigerian students in general, to get ready for mass action.”
THE VICE CHANCELLOR REACTS
The Vice-Chancellor of University of Ibadan, Prof Idowu Olayinka, has responded to the threat of a possible protest organised by the National Association of Nigerian Students, calling is a non-issue and stating that the body is not worthy of challenging the UI authorities.
In a phone call with Campus Reporter, the Vice-Chancellor said: “Students from Polytechnics and Colleges of Education cannot come here and be dictating to us. And you see the kind of language they’re using? Saying, you must do this one with immediate effect?”
Addressing the issues NANS’ threats highlight, the VC explained that the case of Ojo Aderemi (the suspended UI Student Union President) has gone beyond the school management.
He also mentioned that the school is already behind other universities and should not be disrupted again.
“Anybody [reading NANS’ statement] would think UI is in a state of war. Classes have already started. We’re even trying to catch up. So what’s their problem?
“I don’t understand why they want to shut down UI. Who told you guys that UI is under bondage?
“You’re coming to save UI. Go and save your own institutions first, your own college of education or polytechnic, your own college of agriculture, before you come and save UI,” the Vice-Chancellor admonished.
He mentioned that Ojo, who was given a four-semester rustication, has already sued the university management to court, even though he could have rightfully appealed to the Students’ Disciplinary Committee within 14 days of receiving his letter of rustication.
“Rather than appeal to the Governing Council, he went to court. So, what should we do? So, it’s even beyond us.
“The case has been adjourned till October 2nd so, we can’t do anything. We can’t discuss a matter that’s already before a court of law,” the Vice-Chancellor explained.
Finally, responding to the issue of the banned bikes, he stated that there is no problem with transportation in the university as there are alternatives to use.
“The way they are shouting Okada Okada, you’ll think UI has been operating commercial motorcycles since 1948. I mean, what’s the big deal? Is it mandatory that you drive Okada here? Are there no alternatives?”
The Vice-Chancellor also noted that since the ban, he has gone to ‘monitor things’ and did not notice any problems with commuters.
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