The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has appealed to the management and unions of the Ekiti State University (EKSU), Ado Ekiti, to immediately resolve their crisis in order not to subject the students to unwarranted danger.
NANS said closing down the school at this point of alarming insecurity might expose the students to kidnappers and bandits, “who are on the prowl across the country.”
The students’ body stated these in reaction to the closure of EKSU at the weekend owing to persistent protest held by staff which resulted in the disbandment of Academic Staff Union of Universities,(ASUU), Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities(SSANU) and other labour unions in the institution, by the management.
However, in a statement signed by NANS President, Sunday Asefon, yesterday, he appealed to the feuding parties to think of the larger interest of the Nigerian students and the future of the country, by promptly resolving the impasse.
According to Asefon, “My attention has been drawn to the suspension of academic activities at the Ekiti State University by the Governing Council. This closure is avoidable, and it puts the interests of the students in jeopardy, especially as we are just returning from one year ASUU strike.
“NANS under my leadership has immediately commenced high level consultations with relevant stakeholders with the intention of fast-tracking the resumption of academic activities.
“I had met with the leadership of ASUU EKSU chapter, and I also met with the university management and also held a strategic meeting with the Students’ Union Government (SUG) leadership to ensure the immediate de-escalation and resolution of the crises.
“I have also begun the process of establishing contact with the governing council to ensure that we leave no stone unturned towards ensuring timely resumption of academic activities.
“We must not endanger the lives of our students at this sensitive period of security challenges in the country by allowing the students to embark on avoidable and unnecessary travels. Our students should be encouraged by all stakeholders to remain in the school.”
The student leader appealed to the feuding parties to prioritise the interest of the students by ensuring the immediate reopening of the university.
“I appeal to the student-friendly Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, to prevail on the governing council to reconsider the decision to suspend academic activities in the school.
“The government of Fayemi has shown great leadership in the area of staff welfare and quality education, and I plead with all stakeholders to find a centre point at resolving the crises occasioned by arrears of emoluments owed by previous administrations as no one will benefit from confrontations,” he said.