“Every generation, out of relative obscurity, discovers its own mission, either to fulfill it or betray it”- Franz Fanon.
We stand in solidarity with ever-conscious Great Ife students on road to restore students’ dignity to their campus. We commiserate with the entire studentry on the irreplaceable loss of Aishat Adesina, a final year student of the university, whose death could have been avoided at the university health center, and with the family of Aishat.
Countless accounts have shown the series of epileptic services that students get at the said health center of Obafemi Awolowo University, which have made some refer to it as the “death center.” We in the SWL condemn this utmost disregard for students welfare and lives at a reputable institution of such.
We cannot but join the students to put this blame squarely at the doors of the Ogunbodede-led university management for this negligence over the years in providing assuring service at the health center despite the sessional health center fees gulped from students, and the, although, paltry health allocation to the university. It is on this basis that we cannot also but hold the federal government responsible for the loss of our dear Adesina Aishat. The failure to adequately fund public education results in series of toxic experiences for students, just as it is the country at large.
We commend the efforts of the mass of OAU students who have trooped out to protest Aishat’s death. Indeed, a loss of one is a loss for all!
On this note, we support students in their demands for
• A decisive and public probe into the circumstances of Aishat’s death, and bring the perpetuators to justice
•An urgent upgrade of the university health center as against the Vice Chancellor’s claims of the center being the best.
More importantly, we strongly condemn the move of the university management to arbitrarily shut down the university in response to the students’ protest. This is the most callous thing to do without making moves to address the demands of the students. It shows the lack of empathy for the deceased and an encouragement of future occurrences.
Therefore we call on the students’ union leadership to:
•Call for an immediate congress of students to discuss the next line of the struggle
•Ensure the sustenance of the struggle with the #ReopenOAU campaign. The students demands must be met and allow academic activities to resume forthwith.
•Set up a student committee to adequately probe into Aishat’s death
•Campaign for #OgunbodedeMustGo until students’ demands are met.
•Democratic decision making for the running of the university to include all staff and students’ Unions as stipulated by the University Autonomous Act
•Campaign for the adequate funding of education in the country.
•Make use of the press and other campaign tools to get these messages out.
Once again, we share the plights of the family of the deceased, students and staff of the university community. Viva Aluta!
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