By Victor Ogunje
The immediate past President of Student Union Government, Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), Olaseinde Adeyinka yesterday urged the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) to dialogue with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to save public universities from collapse.
Adeyinka, currently aspiring to be the next president of NANS, argued that dialogue for a stable academic calendar should form part of the roles NANS should play to defend the students’ rights to first-class tertiary education.
He made these remarks at a session with journalists in Ado Ekiti yesterday, noting that time “has come for real students to take over the leadership of NANS from those he described as “career students and profiteers.”
Adeyinka explained his resolve to contest the presidential election of the association, saying it was to lead the battle for the reformation of the value system of the students by coalescing with ASUU and university managements to transform the country’s ivory towers.
NANS National convention commences on November 27, 2020, in Abuja, Federal Capital Territory with 14 presidential aspirants seeking to lead the association.
Adeyinka said Nigerian students should start the boost #EndSars restructuring by electing real students to lead NANS against the usual practice of bringing on board old students to lead the apex students’ body in the country.
On reform he would bring on board if elected to lead the association, Adeyinka said: “in the course of my campaign, I’m elated by the way stakeholders are willing to be part of the revolution to ensure a new reality in NANS.
“The movement to bring back NANS to the young majority, to the actual students who can relate more to students’ peculiarities will be actualized at the coming convention. Every system is subjected to change.
“The Nigerian mainstream political structure has witnessed a breakthrough with the #NotTooYoungTo Run bill, I believe the best way to effect this change is to begin with, NANS. Let young capable heads rule NANS and deliver, then it will be easier for Nigerians to believe that the younger ‘Soro Soke’ generation is up to the task.
“I will rebrand and register the NANS brand for the progress of Nigeria, ensure the interest and dignity of Nigerian students remain sacrosanct while maintaining a cordial relationship with the government and other organisations as we bring NANS back to the young vibrant majority.
“We will initiate a lasting and cheap internet access for Nigerian students in accordance with the demands of the global world, revive and revitalize the state of our student unionism and find a lasting solution to the continuous strike action affecting students”.
On his legacy at FUTA, he said his tenure ensured that students were a top priority in all negotiations with those at the corridor of power.
He added that his administration, also, made a conscious effort to solve off-campus electricity problems.