LASU MANAGEMENT POSTPONE STUDENT ACTIVIST’S DISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE MEETING TILL FURTHER NOTICE
By Yusuf Nurudeen OmOmeewa
I was to appear before the Students Disciplinary Committee Meeting slated for Wednesday 22 January, 2020 at 10:00 am before I received the news of the sudden postponement of this meeting till further notice at around 11:00 am. I had prepared to appear before the meeting in company of my Lawyer comrade Ayo Ademiluyi. Friends and comrades also joined me at the venue of the meeting.
After the news of the postponement, we all moved to a place on the campus to discuss briefly. In the course of the discussion, the Students Union President, Welfare Officer and General Secretary joined us. We all reviewed the sudden postponement and expressed disappointment about the university’s decision to postpone the meeting without prior notification to the Students Union and invited students. We agreed that the University needs to set up an independent committee of inquiry outside the Security Unit since the LASU Security Unit itself is indicted in this case that is if the intention of the University is to unravel the case of admission racketeering and not to persecute me. Also, we agreed to call for investigation into the security architecture of the University to identify who and who are officers of the Unit and what their duties are to avoid continuous use of the Security Unit for frame up and witch-hunt.
It is very crucial that this delay should not be taken as if the worst is over. Rather, it has to be utilized by all activists to intensify the campaign to press for dropping of the phoney charges against me, reversal of all similar witch-hunt of student activists and staff union leaders and provision of adequate teaching welfare to students and staff. The Education Rights Campaign (ERC) will come out with details of a campaign in subsequent days.
Below is the public statement I issued on Tuesday January 21, 2020 in response to the invitation to the panel.
New Development on the Phoney Case of Admission Racketeering against my person
INVITATION TO LASU STUDENTS DISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE WITH THE INTENTION TO VICTIMIZE ME IN A PHANTOM CASE OF ADMISSION OF RACKETEERING
My name is Comrade Yusuf Nurudeen Alowonle a.ka. Omomewa. I have written my final papers. By virtue of this, I can be regarded as a graduate of the Lagos State University (LASU) only awaiting the Senate decision on my results. On Monday 20th January, 2020, I received an official letter of invitation from LASU Students Affairs Division. The letter reads in part:
“This is to Invite you to the next Students’ Disciplinary Committee Meeting on the Case of Admission Racketeering and Unlawful Possession of University Documents levelled against you. The meeting is scheduled to hold as follows:
Date: Wednesday, 22nd January, 2020
Venue: Conference Room, School of Transport, LASU
You are expected to be at the venue above mentioned venue latest by 9am”
If this panel finds me guilty as it appears to be the script already written, all of my sweat and tears over the past 4 years of academic sojourn at the Lagos State University (LASU) would amount to a waste. This is why I have taken the pains to inform the general public about my travails and seek your support and solidarity.
As everyone would recall, there has been an attempt to frame me up on a case of admission racketeering. This is retribution for my principled opposition to the anti-student and anti-worker policies of the University administration in my capacity as a leading member of the Education Rights Campaign (ERC) and a renowned student activist on campus. Around November 2019, the University management utilising the University Security and the Department of State Security (DSS) unfurled an elaborate scheme to ensnare me. This involved using proxies to befriend me and through that process placing me in a compromising situation which would permit the University to slam on me this false and contrived allegations.
I was arrested on 28, November 2019 at the ICT department of the Lagos State University by a combined team of the DSS and the campus security. Before I began the journey to the ICT department, one of their agents, named Young Prof, had met me to seek my favour to hand over a parcel to our mutual friend, a certain Mr. Moses of ICT department. Young Prof. and Mr. Moses had tried to befriend me weeks before then apparently in order to make me comfortable with them thereby losing my guard. I never knew that by agreeing to help him hand over the parcel, I had allowed evidence (admission documents of 13 candidates) that would be used to link me to a phoney admission racketeering allegation be planted on me. The security men already lying in wait for me at the ICT department picked me up as soon as they sighted me and once they saw their evidence on me, they immediately began to concoct an allegation of admission racketeering which they have now escalated to a disciplinary panel with a view to expel me from the University just at the moment when I had written my final exams and nearly a graduate.
While doing this, they have refused and ignored the important detail that there were two other individuals involved. A certain Young Prof and another man named Mr. Moses of the ICT. All efforts to provide information to track these two individuals have been rebuffed by the University security which further lends credence to my claim that these individuals are known to the University management and were actually coached to ensnare me in this case in order for the University authorities to have an opportunity to punish me for my principled opposition over the years against its anti-student and anti-worker policies.
At first, it was agreed that the students union should have a representative on the investigation team but after waiting awhile, I personally wrote a letter to the Chief Security Officer of LASU to appeal for an open and democratic inquiry into the case to include elected representatives of all Unions on campus and the students’ affairs division. But till now I have not heard any feedback or been invited for further investigation on the matter except on Monday 20th of January, 2020 when I coincidentally met one of elements who were used to frame me up, Young Prof. LASU at nowhere else but the Security Unit reception.
On Monday 20th January 2020, I visited the Security Unit for another purpose, but on getting there I met a guy whom I recognized his face as Young Prof. LASU the guy who in connivance with Mr. Moses ICT LASU, LASU SIEU and DSS planted a sealed envelope on me on 28/11/2019. I was surprised to see Young Prof. at the security unit without the security unit raising any issue with him on my case before I alleged him. This discovery confirmed my earlier position that the whole of this is to ensnare my person giving my role in LASU as Education Rights Campaign (ERC) member. If not, I had expected the LASU Security Unit to have investigated the said Mr. Moses ICT LASU, MR DAMI (Young Prof. LASU) and Mr. Moses Cousin via the mobile network provider since 28th of November, 2019 that I had furnished the Security Unit with the names and phone numbers of Mr. Moses ICT LASU, MR DAMI (Young Prof. LASU) and Mr. Moses Cousin but this appears not to be the case with this new development and the matter is before the Students Disciplinary Committee.
As things stands now, I have to appear before the Student Disciplinary Committee tomorrow Wednesday 22, January, 2020 to defend my innocence.
I hereby solicit for your usual and relentless solidarity in the face of this ongoing persecution., Specifically, I appeal to the leadership of the students’ union which has statutory membership of the Students Disciplinary committee to demand proper investigation on the matter, to review and expose all of the elements involved in this set-up before the determination of the case at the Student Disciplinary Committee. I call on all Staff unions to also intercede on my behalf and intervene in this case with a view to ensuring that the University management does not succeed at criminalising me and victimising me for my principled opposition to anti-student and anti-worker policies knowing fully well that “an injury to one is an injury to all”.
Yours in struggle
Comrade Yusuf Nurudeen A. (OmOmeewa)