Granted, there’s a protest and lives and property are at stake, but does the UNILAG Vice Chancellor not understand that he is probably the only one in Nigeria with the highest ‘something-happens-I-shut-the-school-gate’ rate? (
yes, that’s what the analysts say).
There was a protest by the National Association of Nigerian Students over the rustication of Adeyeye Olorunfemi, the student who gathered all the ‘elders’ of UNILAG to shame for the world to read (and then) see.
Next thing, he shuts down movement in and out of the school. It is obvious there are a few things that Professor Bello, the 11th Vice Chancellor of University of Lagos does not understand.
First, they release a statement as ridiculous as Adeyeye’s essay, claiming the student was rusticated for breach of a handbook and not for protesting. That statement did not for once address any of the issues raised by Mr. Adeyeye about decay in the school; about the welfare of the students. You can’t just shut down the school when things are not looking up for you. As far as the world knows, the VC is proving the allegations of the student body to be true.
The University of Lagos is also a Federal University with students who have come in from far and wide to reside and school there and it appears the VC did not get this memo. Shutting down the school every time he and his management are scared (we have counted 3 this year) is not in these students’ interests. Where will they go? Where will they sleep?
How about the ripple effect of uncontained crises? There are real security threats out there strategically positioning themselves to take advantage of this mess and who knows how bad the situation might get.
Someone needs to also explain to the VC that UNILAG does not only serve his students. The school is certainly one of the city’s hubs. A lot that sometimes has nothing to do with the students happen there. Activities beyond those on the academic calendar (that he certainly does not care about) happen there. And he is not the VC of the world to shut businesses in or out.
It just doesn’t make sense that a Vice Chancellor should have the power to decide that he’d shut down his school every time he feels hot. That’s not why he was appointed. We think that if he attempts to fix the underlying issues, he won’t have to deal with angry protests that will irk him anymore.