The management of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) has inaugurated the students’ electoral commission and the students’ electoral petition commission in the institution.
Isiaka Aransi, the varsity’s dean of students’ affairs, said the move was in fulfillment of the management’s promise to fully reinstate all organs of students unionism in the institution.
Aransi, who spoke on behalf of Eyitope Ogunbodede, the vice-chancellor, said the students’ activists should emulate their counterparts in the developed world.
The dean also advised the students not to be confrontational in their approach but should rather employ constructive engagement and dialogue to resolve issues with the management.
According to him, the electoral commission is expected to conduct free, fair, and credible elections while the electoral petition commission is to handle all complaints arising from the election.
The move comes as the vice-chancellor also directed the students’ affairs unit to introduce measures aimed at installing vibrant and more articulate students unionism in the institution.
The VC also enjoined the students to see unionism as an incubating stage of socio-political leadership where they could learn rudiments of how the people, states, and nations are governed.
The development comes about four years after the institution suspended students unionism over the incessant protests embarked upon at the time.
It also comes months after the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), zone D (southwest) chapter, gave the institution and others in the region — which suspended students’ union bodies — an ultimatum to reinstate them or face “stiff resistance.”
But the institution had — at that time — described the NANS’ threat as needless, noting that the institution was making concerted efforts to reinstate the students’ union body.
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