Monday, 22 February 2016

ASUU Blasts Gov. Oshiomhole Over destruction of Uniben Varsity Property

Gov. Oshomolle
By Okechukwu Onuegbu

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Owerri zone, has raised an alarm that the Governor of Edo state, Mr Adams Aliyu Oshiomhole has commenced complete demolition of University of Benin properties in the GRA area of Benin partly he earlier destroyed last year.

Speaking in a press briefing held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra state, the zonal coordinator of ASUU Owerri zone, Professor Ike Odimegwu, who spoke on behalf of the union, lamented that: "ASUU finds Gov. Oshiomhole’s action repulsive and an affront on orderliness in the land. As a stakeholder in the university system, ASUU will not take kindly to this regrettable development unexpected from a public figure.

“The union equally demanded the governor to show respect for the laws of the land and look elsewhere to satisfy his thirst for property acquisition, as well as to redeem his promises and compensate the university members of staff who were affected in the earlier demolition last year”.

He said that ASUU recalled the public uproar which trailed Oshiomholes' action sometime ago, alleging that the governor sent thugs to pull down the properties occupied by staff of University of Benin.

"This inhuman conduct attracted condemnation from well meaning individuals, and Oshiomhole made seeming overtures to compensate those staff who suffered losses.  He equally promised to allow all settlement process to run its course. Surprisingly, last week, the governor not only reneged on his promises, but directed the complete demolition of the remaining part of the structures belonging to the university.

“This action is condemn-able. It is the height of lawlessness and irresponsibility for one who swore to uphold respect for the rule of law. It is not accepted. We have exercised enough patience , now we want to bring the matter to the public and members of the National Assembly, to ask for the reasons behind the wanton destruction of University of Benin property. We will not wait till any of our member is harmed or injured before something is done…government of old Mid Western region donated the land to University of Benin, and Oshiomhole has no right to reclaim the property, it is property of the university”.

In answer to a question, Professor Odimegwu who is of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, explained that it is not Owerri zone affair, but ASUU National directive to all the zones, urging them to speak out against the actions of Governor Oshiomhole, adding that the union has been in negotiation for the past one year but the governor always made promises to pay compensation which he never fulfilled. 

Orient Daily reports that others present at the press briefing titled 'Executive lawlessness in Edo state', were the Chairpersons of Federal University of Technology, Owerri (Dr Ikenna Nwachukwu); Imo state University, Owerri (Dr Chidi Nwadiaro); Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike (Dr U.A.U,Onyebinama); Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka (Dr Dennis Aribodor) and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Uli,  (Emeka Nwabunnia) respectively.



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