Students are already adapting to life back in school, as the election for the next Student Union administration beckons. For Seyifunmi Francis Adeosun (Francophone), experience gathered is key in governance as he remains optimistic about his chance of victory for the AAUASU top seat.
In an exclusive interview with AAUA INSIDER, the current law student bared it all.
Q: Tell us more about you
A: By the virtue of naming ceremony and family nomenclature, I am Ṣèyífúnmi Francis Adéọ̀ṣun, but I am popularly known as Francophone. I hail from Irun Àkókó, Àkókò North west local government in Ondo State.
I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 2017 from the prestigious Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko.
As a philosophy student, I was two terms president of Association of Nigerian Authors, AAUA. I served as president of Nigeria Federation of Catholic Students, AAUA. More so, I served as President of Philosophy department in 2016/17 academic session.
My zeal to follow my passion in getting a degree in law spurred me to pursuing the dream. After my NYSC in 2019, I got admitted to study law in AAUA. As a law student, I served as Honorable representing my class in 2019/20 academic session in the Law students Representative Council where I emerged as Parliamentarian of the year.
Currently, I am vying for the AAUASU President for 2021/22 academic session
Q: How have your previous positions prepare you for this SU 001 you’re aspiring for ?
A: Thank you for this question. Leadership position is not one given on a platter of gold. Also, leadership position is one that requires alot of preparation. Among other things, experience is key.
To answer the question, my time as a departmental president had offered me opportunities to face many administrative challenges which to the glory of Olódùmarè, I was able to scale through. This had given me insight to what it looks like to lead.
While I was president, I had opportunities to make decisions on behalf of students and and never for once stood against them.
This as well has prepared me well for a bigger role in leadership.
I believe that if given the mandate to lead the AAUASU, my experience will definitely bring greater things to and for the students.
Q: How do you intend to cope with the problems, ups and downs and challenges associated with this office?
A: When the situation is tough, only tough people will survive. Leadership generally is not for the weak, it’s a course for the strong. As a matter of fact, I see my experience in leadership as a great tool for the day to day runnings of the affairs of our dear union.
In AAUA, I am witnessing my 9th administration. And as such, my experiences gathered through the years has equipped me with a prerequisite knowledge of the various administrative challenges associated with the seat and has given me insight into how I can address them.
Of course, I am aware that no matter how strong you are, you will face challenges. That is why we must entrust our dear union to the hands of a matured, composed, diplomatic and experienced leader. With all sense of humility, I belong to that category.
Q: Do you mean someone with no leadership experience can’t occupy AAUASU president seat or have a peaceful, successful and productive union?
A: No, that’s not my point. Anyone can have a good running of affairs but having experience is an added advantage.
This advantage definitely will further deepen the trust of the students populace in the union.
Q: What do you have in vision for AAUA students as their president?
A: Thank you. Truth be told, everyone aspiring has visions. As a matter of fact, visions are only clearer and more pragmatic than the other. There are some visions that needs no vision to be seen.
However, my ambition of becoming the AAUASU President is what I call the RESUSCITATION PROJECT. It is one that will be based on all round welfare.
It is a known fact that the primary purpose of the union shall be the welfare of the members. This exactly is the position of our AAUASU CONSTITUTION.
As such, my vision is to lead a union that will witness all round welfare in academic, social, spiritual, security (on and off campus), sports, health among others.
Also, it is my desire to bring the union closer to the students by resuscitating our students union building and bring it back to life.
We shall work with necessary quarters to improve the intra-transit system within the university while not leaving out those living outside. We shall improve on the numbers of shuttles we have on ground.
As well, with my experience, connections and exposure, I shall influence private individuals to invest in the Resusitation project. As such, all AAUA students will be proud of our union again.
Q: What exactly does the resuscitating project entails and do you think the union is not close enough to the students?
A: In the famous quote of a sage, Prof. Wọlé Soyinka, he said when you look at the faces of people, you will only realize that there are so much work to be done. With all sense of responsibility, I must commend the efforts of our past and present leaders. In fact, one would only be unfair and ungrateful to say they’ve not done much.
However, we are coming under the platform that is innovative and creative. Foolishness is doing same thing over and over again, expecting different result.
The message I passed is that we will lead a union that brings dynamic and creative ideas to reality; a union that will make the students believe that the leaders can indeed fight their cause and do it without any form of prejudice. Truth be told, our union deserves better.
Q: As a 2-time president of Association of Nigerian Authors, and President of Philosophy department in AAUA, what were the developments recorded during your administration?
A: Without any iota of doubts, the records are there to be verified.
During my time as president of Association of Nigerian Authors we began the publication of our anthology and as well publish two series editions. ANA -under my leadership- organized Feast of the Gods on two occasions which witnessed a huge turn out. We as well were able to perform in as many orientations as possible. The works of our members were as well published in different journals.
Also, my performance as president of philosophy department is till today still regarded as the best administration in the history of the department. During my days as president, we organized not only social but life-building academic programmes. My tenure organized UNESCO World Philosophy day in 2017 and invited Prof Isaac Ukpokolo from University of Ibadan and Prof Wálé Olajide from EKSU. We participated and won various sporting activities including the Dean’s Cup.
It was a complete package during my time as the president of the department and we are ready to give even more
Q: Why do you think you’re capable of leading AAUASU?
A: There is ability, there is capacity and there is capability.
I am very convinced that my experience, exposure, and connection with the students populace has given me a green light.
As a matter of fact, I feel I’m capable of leading the students populace and definitely, I will deliver.
Q: How do you tend to strike a balance between the students and management in cases of conflicting interests?
A: It is a fact that the union is a pressure group. What is the function of pressure group? To influence decisions to favour its members.
With my experience in leadership, I have learnt the importance of diplomacy in leadership.
I am aware of the fact that we can’t satisfy everybody and that’s why we are coming on board with Utilitarian leadership, which is maximizing happiness of the greatest number.
I, for one, will put in every diplomatic means of resolving issues and I am sure with a well channeled communication, both parties would understand the importance of the decision reached.
Q: How can you describe your relationship with other executives during your time as the president of philosophy department and as the president of Association of Nigerian Authors?
A: I had a smooth and cordial relationship with all my executive members. Of course, we had moments of disagreements but that never stood in our way to achieving our collective goals.
There is no administration without any form of disagreements or misunderstanding, what is important is ability to put aside personal will and do the collective will.
Above all, I had always enjoyed cordial relationship with all my executive members in all areas I’ve led
Q: Some stakeholders believe you only want to use the office as a stepping stone to Nigeria politics. How close are they to the truth?
A: Firstly, let me correct this notion, I am not a card carrying member of any political party, athough it is within my right as a citizen to do that.
Having said that, it is unfortunate that in this part of the world, we focus on cheap propaganda and let it control us.
While it is not correct that the sole reason for my contest is to use it as a stepping stone, no one prays to remain on a spot. Whatever we do today becomes a point of reference for further recommendations.
To state it clear, I’m not under any sponsorship of any political party of politician, it’s a propaganda that cannot fly!
I have heard that before now, so it’s not anything new! During my days in philosophy, I served as president of the department and I produced students union president and other officers at both faculty and SU level.
It will interest you to know that I was to contest for president of the Students Union in 2016 but I had to let go for a colleague.
I am vying for President because I have garnered enough experience over the years to identify and know what the union needs and how to go about it. Permit me to add that I’ve witnessed 9 students union presidents and I can confirm to you that I’ve really learnt a lot.
I believe I have enough experience, sagacity, capacity, influence and affluence to make our union center of attention among committee of Students Unions.
Q: What will your advice be for the current SU president?
A: My first advice is that he should never get discouraged by the challenges of the office. There is a natural pressure on the office and as such, he should relax and take things a step at a time.
In addition, I will like to advice that he should remember the provisions of our constitution and make sure sanity is restored to the union by making sure that election is returned back to second semester, any attempt to delay the election will make the students populace more disappointed.
And lastly, I will like to advice that for whatever reason, the president should do everything within his strength to repay the faith of the students who voted for him.
Olaosebikan Pamilerin Joshua otherwise kown as “OlaPamJosh” is a philantropic journalist |a becoming poetic philosopher |young minds motivator | crackerjerck enemy of unscrupulous acts | and a lover of service to humanity.