Gabriel Dike, Lagos
A major industrial crisis is brewing at the Lagos State University (LASU) following the sack on Wednesday of the entire executives of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) by some concerned academic staff.
The concerned academic staff also appointed a five-member caretaker committee to run the affairs of ASUU-LASU. The decision was taken at the congress made up of past executives of the union and aggrieved members.
In a swift reaction, ASUU-LASU executives described the congress as illegal and that it was summoned by suspended members and those who withdrew their membership from the union.
Giving reasons for their action, the concerned academic staff said the tenure of the Dr Oyewunmi-led exco, including Dr Tony Dansu, Dr Oyekan, Dr Aboderin, and Dr Suenu expired in February 2018, adding “unfortunately, all of them are no longer in the service of LASU.”
“This means in effect that since 2018 we have had no functioning ASUU-LASU exco, as a result of which no progress at all has been made in regard to the corporate welfare of members.
“These welfare matters cannot be decided or discussed without appropriate leadership structure and spokespersons.”
A member of the concerned academic staff told Daily Sun that it was based on the exigency of a leadership vacuum that prompted the proposal to hold ASUU-LASU congress.
“The decision to sack the executives was taken at a congress convoyed by ASUU-LASU. The caretaker committee is headed by Prof Lakin Ishaq Akintola. The committee is to produce a credible exco within weeks,” the member explained.
Reacting to the development, Secretary of ASUU-LASU Dr Tony Dansu asked how individuals who are not members of the union could call a congress and claimed to have sacked the exco, stating that “there are procedures to call congress and also dissolve the exco. The national body will react appropriately to their action.”
In a letter to the Vice-Chancellor said the call for ‘congress of ASUU-LASU’ by non-exco members is illegal and violates numerous rules of the union, noting “there are strong reports that the idea has the backing of the university administration.
“The illegal ‘congress’ in the name of ASUU-LASU is capable of generating avoidable crises if not nipped in the bud. It is our hope that the university administration will call these persons to order in the interest of peace and order within the university.”
The letter which was copied the governor, his deputy, special adviser on education and the two deputy Vice-Chancellors fingered some suspended past leaders and those who have withdrawn from the union as the brain behind the illegal congress.