The workers of the Adeyemi University of Education, Ondo, Ondo State have declared that the campus of the institution would not have peace if the Federal Government fails to appoint a vice chancellor for the institution.
The workers had earlier protested the alleged failure of the Federal Government to appoint a vice chancellor after the institution had been upgraded to a university from a College of Education status.
The non-teaching staff unions of the school – the Senior Staff Union of Colleges of Education of Nigeria, the National Association of Academic Technologists of Nigeria and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities Associated Institutions, vowed to continue the protest until the federal government heeds their call.
The protesters disclosed that the current Provost of the school, Dr Samuel Akintunde, had been given another term of four years to be provost instead of appointing a VC. The action, they said, was to retain the institution’s status as a college of education.
One of the leaders of the protesters and leader of the Senior Staff Union of Colleges of Education of Nigeria of the institution, Comrade Obeyo Cletus, said the federal government had refused to regard the institution as a university six months after it had been upgraded as the principal officers have not been appointed, particularly the vice chancellor.
He said , “We are here as teaching staff of this institution. Since January this year that the university has been upgraded and gazetted to be a university, we have not got a vice chancellor. We are telling the government that we need our university; we need our vice chancellor. Enough is enough.
“The head of this institution now is a provost and a provost cannot head a university. Everything we are doing here amount to illegality, because we are not a university yet without a vice chancellor. We have written letters to all stakeholders about the matter and in one month time and nothing is being done, there would be no peace on this campus.”
The three unions in a congress held after the protest accused the governing council of the Adeyemi College of Education of frustrating the process of taking off of the university despite the signing of the bill that upgraded the institution into law by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).
The communique read in part, “The position of the governing council is working against the stand of the Federal Government of Nigeria as indicated in the university gazette. The governing council is hereby challenged to have negated the Federal Government of Nigeria’s position. The unions observed with dismay that the governing council concealed information from members of staff as regards the university status and used that to reappoint the College Provost and Registrar to torpedo the take-off of the University, despite that Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo, is no longer in existence by law.
“The act of the Governing Council was illegal and dereliction of functions. The official gazette empowers the governing council to still continue in office as the council of the university but not as Council of College of Education. Hence, such provision negates the decision of the governing council to re-appoint the provost and the registrar for a second term in office when there is no more College of Education.”
Also, in the communique, the congress gave the FG 30 days ultimatum to ensure “immediate take-off of the university as established by the law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (the university should have taken off since December 23, 2021 when accented into Law by President Muhammadu Buhari).”
They also called for the ” immediate reversal of the reappointment of the provost and the college registrar for a second term. The official gazette should be fully implemented with immediate effect. The Federal Government of Nigeria should honour her laws and act accordingly.”