It is no longer news that the Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko is now on shutdown following the violent protest that happened on the 21st and 22nd of November, 2021.
The national union of campus journalists AAUA chapter wrote an editorial to show how the Dean of Students Affairs Prof. Akanbi was able to control the angry protesters on the 21st of November, 2021 despite the day being a rest day.
In an editorial released by the NUCJ AAUA, as followed it was stated that “His presence, while the atmosphere was under control, prevented the students from being presumptuous. Some protesters even offered to give him a ride, which he politely declined as he sauntered with them. He identified with the students agitations, informing them of how the management are committed to the students’ welfare”.
Also, It was stated that “The Prof, despite disgruntled students breathing down his neck, employed wisdom to quell the protest at its earliest by showing up to take control before it escalated”.
Below is the editorial received by our correspondent
*NIGERIAN UNION OF CAMPUS JOURNALISTS (NUCJ AAUA CHAPTER)*
25th of November, 2021
*AAUA Protest: How DSA Showed Proactive Leadership*
Eyeballs have been raised, tongues have been restless. Apparently, the previous editorial published by this organization has provoked -as expected- reactions, supports, counter-opinions, threats and intimidations.
Unfortunately, some quarters have regarded it as a way of attacking the Student Union President, Comr Ogunsanmi Kolade (Multiple). They failed to comprehend the stand of the organization, which is to make the student union understand how their proactiveness would have curbed the crisis before it deteriorated.
Of course, we knew the President was up and running on the issue among others. However, we say the protest particularly would have been controlled if the executive had prepared an umbrella before the rain!
Without leaving stones unturned, the body will elucidate her stand in a chronological order
*How AAUA DSA Curbed Protest*
Around sunset on Sunday, some students of the institution had staged a peaceful protest against the rampant insecurity issue like robbery, molestation and harassment leading to the complaints, especially at the Permanent site.
The Dean of the Students Affairs -Prof. A.O Akanbi- when Sunday should be a resting day for him, was at the scene of the protest, addressing the protestants and trying to put the situation under control.
His presence, while the atmosphere was under control, prevented the students from being presumptuous. Some protesters even offered to give him a ride, which he politely declined as he sauntered with them. He identified with the students agitations, informing them of how the management are committed to the students’ welfare.
It would have been better if the executives had borrowed a leaf from the Dean’s action. Rather, they added fuel to fire by choosing to “advise students to distance themselves from any protest that does not involve the Students’ Union”, as obtained in the press statement released from the Union’s Secretariat.
When they finally showed up, their presence had been rejected like the biblical Saul before Samuel. Even the Alale of Akungba, HRM, Oba Isaac Adeyeye noticed this, which he berated while advising the students who gave him the mandate to trust him to deliver.
The Prof, despite disgruntled students breathing down his neck, employed wisdom to quell the protest at its earliest by showing up to take control before it escalated.
This battle would have been won if the student union had blocked all loopholes hours before the examination commenced. A stitch in time saves nine, so they say. However, efforts were unannounced until the students took law into their hands, leading to damage of properties within the university campus.
By moving their agitation to the highway and Senate building, the disgruntled students had accused the union of neglecting her duties in representing the interest of the populace as they failed to inform the students of the management’s conclusion at due time.
*NUCJ Socially Responsible*
Undeniably, one of the main principles of the social responsibility theory is that the media should accept and fulfill certain obligations to society and the obligations are mainly to be met by setting high professional standards which entails truth, accuracy, objectivity, and balance.
Prior to the meeting between the Vice-Chancellor and faculty presidents along with the student union, NUCJ -at a press conference with the union’s president- pleaded that student journalists should be present, which was declined.
As of press time, NUCJ did not receive any official report of the meeting, nor was NUCJ given a chance to contribute to decisions made, despite being the Fourth Estate of the Realm!
It should interest all to know that the social responsibility theory, which the propagandists are brandishing, is coined from the libertarian theory of the press, which advocates autonomy and political freedom of choice, individualism and voluntary association of the press.
NUCJ AAUA has over time prided itself on accurate, balanced and fair reporting as it has ceaselessly brought the good image of the institution to the limelight through trained reporters.
*NUCJ’s Stand On The Protest*
Frowning against the Editorial released by the NUCJ a few hours ago, the Student Union Leader of AAUA has accused and questioned the stand of NUCJ AAUA, on the uncoordinated protest that led to the closure of the school indefinitely.
Fortunately, witnesses can verify that the NUCJ AAUA president, Oluwatosin Ologun advised that the students should not protest, as opposed to the opinion of the majority at the stakeholders meeting agitating for the third Cs of Aluta: Confrontation, as revealed in links from reports published on the AAUA INSIDER platform
Apart from the president replying to a student journalist to ‘shut up’ and ‘stop asking him stupid questions’ in a WhatsApp conversation, his cohorts have also developed the habit of silencing any criticism with statements like “… compilation of names is going on low-key, … Be watchful of what you say, to avoid your name entering the list.”
At a time when ideas should be accepted from different angles, it is saddening that any form of criticism is classified as opposition and intimidation becomes the order of the day.
NUCJ objectively covers stories in AAUA within their reach. Unfortunately, the Students Union is not inclined in relaying needed information to the press which serves as the Voice and Information carrier for the student populace.
We believe there are other ways to solve issues rather than a protest that was carried out by a flock of sheep without a shepherd. We chose not to publish our previous editorial because we believe in the power of collaborative responsibility.
Again, the Students Union leaders are responsible for the students. That should be a settled argument. A father should control his home, a cleric should control his church, the king should control his town, and the Student Union President should have control over the students.
With good counselling, there is more than enough time for the president to write his name in gold.
*Nigeria Union of Campus Journalists, AAUA chapter*
Agbelusi Samuel is a campus journalist, writer, red carpet host, political and sport analyst. A political science student that covers news and politics beats for AAUA INSIDER.