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Tuesday, 26 April 2016

We won’t sign undertaking – UNILAG students insist

Students of the University of Lagos have kicked against a directive from management of the institution asking them to sign an undertaking of good conduct before they could be re-admitted.
President of the University of Lagos Students Union, Mohammed Olaniyan made this known at a media briefing held in Lagos on Tuesday.
According to Olaniyan, the students have not done anything wrong to warrant the decision taken by the management.
Ahead of next week resumption, the management has directed students to download and fill an undertaking form. Parents and guardians have also been asked to fill an indemnity form, a condition on which their wards would be re-absorbed.
The institution was closed following a protest by the students over absence of basic amenities on the campus.
Olaniyan said students would not go into any agreement with the management via an undertaking. He described the manner students of the university were treated as callous, wicked and undemocratic.
He, however, urged students who were under pressure to sign the document to secure affidavits stating that they were under duress to comply.
The unionist said, “We encourage students to remain strong and affirmative at this critical moment as we have already sought both legal and political advice. And we are taking steps already. We advise those who have signed any of those documents to also do an affidavit stating clearly that they were made to sign the undertaking under duress to partake in the examination that has been announced by the management.
“We challenge the management to show to the world what facilities of the school were damaged in the course of the peaceful protest we embarked upon. Without mincing words, we reiterate that we stand for what is right on behalf of the students of the university, even in the face of victimisation.”
Olaniyan also described the suspension of the students’ union activities as a contradiction of the country’s democratic disposition. According to him, the process that led to the suspension was insincere and unfair.
“We received a notice on the April 12, requesting our presence at a truce meeting with the management on April 13, at the Senate Building. To our dismay, the supposed meeting transmuted into a panel of inquiry led by the immediate past Dean of Students Affairs, Prof. Olukayode Amund.

At the panel, prepared questions were thrown at the unprepared students’ representatives. Apparently, the panelists were prepared to throw their guests off guard. It is our assumption that it is not the responsibility of a panel of inquiry to indict or apportion blames to parties. That the purported and unpopular suspension of ULSU was a fallout of the inquiry is atavistic and retrogressive,” he said.
He said the students resorted to peaceful demonstration to draw the management’s attention to their hardships they suffered as are a result of absence of basic facilities after other options had failed.




Punch

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