LAUTECH: South-West ASUU Stage Protest To Ajimobi’s Office

Academic workers union under the aegis of Academic Staff Union of Universities ( ASUU ) from the Lagos and Ibadan zones on Friday staged a peaceful protest across Ibadan, the Oyo state capital city on what they described as the continuous neglect of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomosho.

The protesters who gathered at the headquarters office of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Agodi Gate, carrying placards walked through Total Garden –UCH-and terminated at the Oyo State Secretariat, Agodi Ibadan where they delivered a letter of protest to the Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi.

Institutions under the Lagos zone include, University of Lagos, Lagos State University, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Tai Solarin University of Education and University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, while the University of Ibadan, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Osun State University, Kwara State University and University of Ilorin makes up the Ibadan zone of the Union.

The protesters were led by both the Ibadan and Lagos zonal leader of the union. Inscriptions on some of the placards read, “Aregbe, Ajimobi, do not kill the best state University in Nigeria”, “What is Omoluabi in not funding education”, “Education is the heritage of Yoruba’s, do not kill Lautech”, ASUU Lagos Zone demands adequate funding for Lautech, Ogbomosho, and fund education in Nigeria”, “ASUU Lautech, Ogbomosho says Lautech must not be liquidated. Governors Ajimobi/Aregbesola, release funds to Lautech as advocated by Wole Olanipekun visitation panel” and “You are all products of free public education, do not destroy it.”

Other placards read, “Do not sacrifice Lautech for mushrooming Tech U”, “Oyo/Osun People, shine your eyes, Lautech must not die”, “KPMG did not recommend increase in tuition, stop taking education away from the reach of the masses”, “Aare Atunluse and Ogbeni, do not destroy public education”, “Do not sell Lautech. Lautech is not a commodity.”, “Support Lautech Governing Council by making funds available” and “Do not put the lives of 30,000 students of Lautech in jeopardy. Aregbesola, Ajimobi act fast”.

Speaking on the rationale behind the protest, ASUU UI Chairman, Dr. Deji Omole said the protest is in support of the struggle embarked upon by the academic staff unions of Lautech, Ogbomosho to get the university properly funded, saying “we realized that since the beginning of the administration of Aregbesola and Ajimobi, they have simply refused to fund the university. The university that used to be one of the best state universities in Nigeria is now groaning in pains of underfunding. And we view this as gross irresponsibility on the part of the owner states. We are here to register our protest to the way the university has been treated by Ajimobi and Aregbesola.”

Similarly, the Ibadan Zonal Coordinator, Dr Ade Adejumo said the government insistence that the institution can survive on internally generated funds is the peak of irresponsibility noting that Lautech as a public institution must be funded by public funds which are in the coffer of the government.

Receiving the protesters on behalf of the Governor Abiola Ajimobi, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Dr Gbade Ojo assured the protesters of the commitment of the owner state governors.

Noting that, his service as the Chairman of the government committee set up to generate a white paper on the report of the Wole Olanipekun visitation panel on the institution, Ojo assuage the minds of the protesters that many discoveries and revelation on the institution shows gross mismanagement of funds, appealing to the protesters to poke their nose into the affairs and running of the institution by the management and the governing council.

Assuring the university lecturers that the letter will be transmitted to the governor, the CoS disclosed that “in the last few weeks, the government has increased the subventions given to the institutions in Oyo state with some tertiary institutions in Oyo state getting as much as 80 percent of the subventions”, saying it is an indication of the government commitment to improving education in the state.

Powered by Afogboja E-Creation