Abiodun Onafuye/ Abeokuta
Governor Ibikunle Amosun of the western Nigerian state of Ogun has promised to revisit the fees payable by students in state owned universities, though he also expressed displeasure over the manner the students went about their agitation for two days, causing some discomfort to residents and visitors.
He charged the students, who wanted a maximum fee of N50,000, to be more civilised in pushing for concessions from the government.
Amosun stated this Friday in an address to students of Olabisi Onabanjo University, OOU, Ago Iwoye.
Amosun explained that he was out of the State to Abuja when the students commenced their protest yesterday, warning that, such act should not repeat itself, as they should have catalogued their demands and send them to the appropriate quarters for necessary action, rather than engaging in an uncivilised manner.
He reminded the students that their union leaders from all the State-owned tertiary institutions were adequately represented at the
meetings with government officials when final decision on the new tuition fees in the State was finalized.
Amosun however, assured that the committee which took decision on the new tuition regime would reconsider its stands towards
addressing the OOU students’ demands.
While appreciating the governor’s concerns over their plight, the students, through their President, Comrade Olusegun Ifade, a.k.a
Socialist, however, apologized to the State government on behalf of his colleagues.
Ifade, a 400-level student of Sociology promised the governor that they would return to classes for lectures, pending the outcome of the
committee within one week, adding that they will come and visit the governor after the expiration of the one week promise.
The students began their protest Thursday and slept in the town, while awaiting the return of Governor Amosun from Abuja.
As early as 5:00 this morning, they continued the protest and barricaded all major streets in the metropolis. They also vandalised shops as well as public and private cars on sight during the protest, which lasted for hours.
The OOU students had demanded a further reduction of their school fees and demanded that the implementation should take effect from 2013/2014 session, instead of 2014/2015 session as announced by the State government.
After so many hours of protest, the State governor, Ibikunle Amosun however, drove into their midst and ordered that all the students
should move into the M.K.O Abiola International Stadium where he addressed them.
The governor, later distributed buses to all the tertiary institutions in the State, with all the Students Union leaders appreciating the
kind gesture, promising the governor of their support in his bid for re-election in 2015.