Non-teaching staff of Osun State University (UNIOSUN) have vowed to keep agitating until their Earned Allowances are fully paid.
The workers also said the closure of the school by management Monday last week would not deter their non-violence protest which holds daily to prevent vehicular movement in and out of the university.
The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the unions comprising Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Non Academic Staff Union of Universities and Allied Institutions (NASU), and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT), UNIOSUN chapter, are also demanding the sack of the Vice Chancellor, Prof Labode Popoola as well as the dissolution of the Governing Council, which they say has been ‘compromised”
The workers are also urging Osun State government to make public the report of the investigative panel set up by the university’s Governing Council to investigate Popoola’s alleged financial and administrative malpractices.
The Governing Council of UNIOSUN on Monday announced indefinite closure of the institution with the Registrar Gafar Shittu saying certain ‘notorious activities’ were being perpetrated by some non-teaching staff in the guise of unionism.
The unions said Popoola was demanding his pound of flesh because the workers insisted on full payment of their allowances, as well as exposed his financial and administrative irregularities.
Last week, JAC issued a statement signed by the chairmen of the three unions-comrades Isaiah Fayemi (NASU) Adeleke Ismael (NAAT), and ‘Lekan Adiat (SSANU).
The workers also accused the vice chancellor of having perfected plans to sack the executive members of JAC.
They accused Popoola of reckless spending particularly under current economic recession. They said at a time top civil servants in the state are placed on half salary, management acquired a jeep valued as N61 million for Council chairman and is about to acquire more for VC cronies.
However, Popoola, in his response, said some of the leaders of the unions had questions to answer about financial misconduct and were trying to evade justice.
In the statement, JAC detailed the ‘wrongs’ by Popoola. The statement reads: “Some senior members of his management have also outsourced contracts to themselves through purchase of doors and construction of a store without value for money collected. He has fully paid transport allowance to his Personal Assistant who is not a statutory staff of the university. He has awarded several multi-million naira contract without regard to due process.”
“But is it possible for the vice chancellor to single handedly alter the law of the university? Is it possible for the VC to buy vehicles for the university or attempt to sack workers?” Popoola responded in his denial.
“Every members of the university community including my very self are appointees by government. Therefore, I will advise you to do your investigation well.
“Why do they want to evade justice in a decent society? For instance, the SSANU chairman is being investigated about three years ago on allegations of financial misconduct. I was not part of the wole thing then? I came here less than 18 months ago. All of them have one issue or the other and I can assure you the university law will take its full course.”