…As NASU Members Shun Exercise, Students Fume

The seven-day industrial action, to be kick-started in Monday, October 24, by the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities, NASU, of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, FUNAAB, flopped woefully today, as majority of members of the union ignored the call to embark on strike.

They were all at their duty posts, both at the main campus and the Mawuko campus, for pre-degree students.

Executives of National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS, and FUNAAB’sStudents’ Union Government, SUG in a peaceful demonstration against the NASU strike on Monday at FUNAAB main gate.

The congress was primarily called to push for the promotion of Mr. Ishaq Odunjo, who failed all promotion interviews and tests conducted by the university, in a recently conducted exercise, using the istrumentality of strike by the union to blackmail the university management. Mr. Odunjo, former chairman of FUNAAB NASU, is now a member of the NASU national executive.

The executives of the Students’ Union Government, SUG, of the university and those of other student bodies at the state level solidly stood by the university management, as demonstrated by their massive presence to give solidarity support.

They warned that the strike will be resisted, as it was resisted today, 24th October, 2022; describing the thought of a strike at this point in time as “inhuman and wicked.”

NASU had in an earlier correspondence, signed by its National Assistant Secretary, Damola Adelekun, informed the university management that it was directing NASU-FUNAAB to go on a seven-day strike to demand for the promotion of Mr. Ishaq Odunjo, and the reversal of a council decision on a disciplinary matter concerning four of its members.

Furthermore, it wanted the university management to take a decision on a matter that is already in the Ibadan division of the Appeal Court.

The management of the university, in a swift reaction, condemned the planned strike, describing it as “ill-informed,” because the union did not follow the stipulated procedure established in labour laws and university regulations.

CompassNG, which monitored the ‘ill-fated’ industrial action on Monday, noted that the exercise was a case of “dead on arrival,” DOA, as majority of members of the union in the university ignored the strike completely.

There were, however, joyous celebrations of the achievements of the out-going Vice Chancellor, VC, of FUNAAB, Prof. Felix Kolawole Salako, by the students and staff of FUNAAB, as displayed on different banners, cardboards displayed by the student around the campus and playing of music, which they danced to.

Speaking to CompassNG, a FUNAAB-NASU member, Mr Ajani Yomibo, condemned the strike, pointing out that they can never be a party to an exercise selfishly called by two leaders of the union and their foot soldiers, who have already turned the local NASU branch to their private enterprise.

Fielding questions from newsmen, the President of FUNAAB Students Union Government, Comrade Seyi Ale, wondered why any union would be calling for strike, when the students are just returning to school from an eight-month strike, embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.

Ale pointed out that there are many other ways apart from strike through which NASU could seek redress, describing the exercise as “anti-student and inimical to the good works of the Vice Chancellor, the relative peace on campus and the development of the university in general.”

Corroborating him, the President of the Progressive Students’ Movement of Nigeria, PSMN, Comrade Bestman Okejiafor, President, and the Deputy Senate President of the National Association of Nigeria a Students, NANS, Comrade Segun Elvis, l fumed at the induatrial action called by NASU, saying “enough is enough”

Members of the executives of NASU, FUNAAB branch could not be reached for comments when contacted as at the time of filing this report as calls to their phones went unanswered.

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