Workers and students of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, engaged in jubilation over the dissolution of the governing council of the institution.
The Federal Government had on Thursday dissolved the Governing Councils of the University of Port Harcourt and OAU, Ile-Ife, respectively.
The dissolution notice, which was signed by the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, ordered that the Governing Councils of the two universities be dissolved with immediate effect.
The notice read in part, “The process of appointing a substantive VC in OAU be suspended pending the determination of the subsisting court case.
“The Chairman and members of these two governing council shall hand over any property belonging to the University to the registrars of the respective institutions.”
When our correspondent visited the OAU campus, workers and students were seen rejoicing that the Federal Government granted their prayers.
It would be recalled that workers of the OAU under the aegis of Non-Academic Staff Union and Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities had embarked on continuous protest since June 6.
Apart from protesting, they have also approached the court to nullify the process followed in appointing Prof. Ayobami Salami as the new VC.
Following the continuous protest, the authorities ordered closure of the university and postponed resumption indefinitely.
“It is good that our labour did not end in vain. We have been here (OAU Senate building) since June 6, day and night because we want a free and fair process of appointing a new VC,” one of the protesters said.
When contacted, the Chairman of SSANU OAU, Comrade Ademola Oketunde, expressed satisfaction with the dissolution of the Governing Council.
While commending the Federal Government for prompt intervention, Oketunde said members of the unions would stop protesting.
He said, “We are not continuing our protest for now. This is to appreciate President Muhammad Buhari for his intervention and unquestionable integrity used to put things in order on our campus. Although we have not met, we will resume possibly on Monday.
“We hope that within a short period of time, the acting VC will be announced and students will be asked to resume.”
He explained that if the Prof. Salami, who was earlier appointed as the VC, emerges through a transparent process, members of the union would not complain.
“We don’t have any issue with Prof. Salami. If he eventually emerges, we will work with him and give him our maximum cooperation,” he added.
In his reaction, the Public Relations Officer of the University, Mr. Abiodun Olarewaju, expressed his satisfaction with the intervention of the Federal Government.
“We are awaiting further instructions from the Federal Government. When there is a problem between two factions, there should be a gladiator which is the role Federal Government has played,” he added.