FCA IBADAN: Not Yet Hurrah Despite the Commencement of Regular Academic and Administrative Activitie
FCA IBADAN: Not Yet Hurrah Despite the Commencement of Regular Academic and Administrative Activities in the College
By Caleb O. Caleb, ERC FCA Branch Secretary
The Education Rights Campaign (ERC), Moor plantation branch, welcomes the entire students and workers in the Federal College of Agriculture, FCA, Ibadan back on campus for a full commencement of both the academic and administrative activities which were unnecessarily disrupted in the college for over three months.
It must be recalled that the arbitrary disruption of both the academic and administrative activities in the college was authored Dr Babajide Adelekan, the provost of the college, on August 20, 2017 when he shut down the college in fear of the planed students’ protest against poor learning and living condition on campus. It was this arbitrary and unilateral closure of the college that fueled the indefinite industrial action embarked upon by the entire workers unions in the college under a joint platform dubbed Joint Action committee, JAC.
The level of steadfastness and determination exhibited by mass of students and the leadership of the students’ union in the college are quite commendable, so also are members and leadership of the three workers unions in the college. But beyond this commendation is also a need to appreciate and salute the understanding of mass of workers in the college for their decision to eventually suspend the over 6months industrial deadlock mainly in the interest of mass of poor and innocent students.
However, while the academic and administrative activities in the college have fully resumed since February 26, 2018, the poor condition of working and living of both workers and students that formed the background for the industrial crisis that lingered for over 6months is yet to be resolved. Electricity supplies both in the hostel, workers offices including laboratory continue to be epileptic as ever. There has not been adequate supply of water in halls of residence and offices. Provision of items like identity cards, log books, lab and farm coats which students were forced to pay for are yet to be given to them while many course are yet to be accredited in the college.
It is in the consideration of this deplorable condition under which both the academic and administrative activities have commenced in the college that ERC calls on both students and workers unions in the college to insist on a conducive atmosphere of learning and working before the school examination scheduled for the first week in April commences. ERC suggest that a meeting of the leadership of workers and students with the college administration will be necessary in this regard for an adequate presentation of both the demands of students and workers in the college.
However, ERC equally urges both the leadership of students and workers union not to lose sight in calling a prior and independent congress of their respective unions so as to have a full compilation of all areas of needs of workers and students towards an elaborate presentation before the college administration.
Again, it has also come to our notice in ERC that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture had recently issued query letters to the leadership of the three staff unions in the college for carrying out and defending the democratic and collective decision of their members throughout the course of the over 6month industrial deadlock in the college. ERC condemns the action of the ministry and demands immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the said query letters. Such query letter is undemocratic and unwarranted as it capable to plunge the college to another round of avoidable industrial crisis.
Another industrial dispute in the college at this material point in time will no doubt be inimical and detrimental to mass of students in the college. It is with a view to avert this that ERC calls on the leadership of the Students’ Union to officially communicate with the necessary officers in the Federal Ministry of Agriculture with a view to demand an immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the queries so as to allow the fragile peace that just returned in the college to endure.
To Join ERC and participate in its activities contact the following numbers: 09057090894; 07037415636; 08033914091.