The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), zone D (south-west) chapter, has given seven working days ultimatum to three institutions in the region to reinstate students expelled over their involvement in unionism.
The institutions are the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), University of Ibadan (UI), and Lagos State University (LASU).
In a statement jointly signed by its executives and dated April 6, the zone’s chapter of the association condemned the expulsion of Ifemosu Michael (FUNAAB), Arotiba Olawale Affluence, and Yusuf Nurudeen Alowonle (LASU), and Ojo Aderemi of UI.
It also demanded the reinstatement of suspended students’ union bodies at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH), and University of Lagos (UNILAG).
The association said it is unfortunate that institutions “meant to be seen as incubators of knowledge that produces critical minds will not cease to suspend Students’ Union activities at the slightest provocation.”
It described the expulsion of the students and consequent suspension of students’ bodies as a violation of “their godly and constitutionally recognised right to freedom of association and assembly.”
It added that the association would stage “stiff resistance” if the aforementioned institutions failed to adhere to the given ultimatum.
“We demand the immediate reinstatement of all expelled and rusticated students’ activists within the next 7 working days. Ifemosu Michael of Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta; Arotiba Olawale Affluence, Yusuf Nurudeen Alowonle of Lagos State University and Ojo Aderemi of University of Ibadan,” it read.
“Free and independent students’ unionism without interference from the school authorities and the state. The right of all individuals to freely exist and operate on campuses in so far they do not make use of violence to achieve their objectives is inalienable.
“It is on this basis we demand for the immediate and unconditional reinstatement of Obafemi Awolowo University Students’ Union, Yaba College of Technology and University of Lagos Students’ Unions within the next 7 working days, and, failure to do this shall be met with stiff resistance.”
The association also condemned the composition of the students’ union caretaker committee by the management of Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH).
It maintained that the management “has no business with how the affairs of the students’ union are run most especially when it has to do with transition.”
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