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Fadeyi Oluwaseun
Ladoke Akintola University Ogbomosho
B.tech Marketing Management
200Level, Nigeria.
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A new accommodation policy introduced by the management of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife has drawn the ire of the students who described the new method as wicked and anti-masses.

The students under the aegis of Action Committee of the Great Ife Students’ Union disclosed this during a press conference addressed at the Correspondents’ chapel in Osogbo on Tuesday.

The group, led by Comrade Dunsin Olowolafe said the body of students challenged the power vested in the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede to proscribe a democratic union of the institution.

He said it was discovered that the reason for proscribing the union and setting the unfavourable accommodation policy was when the management tried to increase the tuition fees at the faculty of Health Sciences to about N85, 000.

Olowolafe frowned at the ploy adopted by the management in selecting new Hall executives with instruction to impose unfavourable accommodation policy on the students.

He said: “The accommodation policy was a wicked response to the crisis of congestion on the university campus.

“The residential hostels which accommodated about 70 per cent of the students was decongested by driving majority of the students to town/off campus, a situation which has further worsened the transportation crisis on the campus.

According to him, surveillance has shown that the new policy was meant to send students out of university hostels to seek accommodation and occupy most of the expensive hostels off campus owned by administrators of the institution.

Olowolafe said the students who are now living in town are facing untold hardship of hike in house rent and exposed to a series of crimes and attacks.

The group demanded a probe of the Vice Chancellor and recovery of funds meant for the construction of four new affordable halls of residences.

They also demanded a democratically elected students’ union, an end to ban on the freedom of students to associate freely, end to brutality by porters, school security and the police.

Other demands by the students include construction of sufficient and quality lecture theatres and residential hostels, proper funding of education sector with at least 26 per cent of the country’s budget, public probe of all funds released to the institution, payment of all wages and allowances for workers and the implementation of the new minimum wage.

But in a swift reaction, the Public Relations Officer of OAU, Mr. Abiodun Olanrewaju said that the students have right to exercise their right but that they should be reminded not to go against their matriculation oath.

He explained that the university with 6,000 plus bed spaces to accommodate students had 8,750 first-year students alone in addition to the same number in the final year and wondered the magic management would adapt to distribute bed spaces.

Source: https://www.independent.ng/students-protest-oau-new-accommodation-policy/

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