The Senior Staff Association of Non-academic Staff Union (SSANU) in Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo, says no union is caged by the institution’s authorities.
Mr Saheed Oseni, Chairman, SSANU-LASU, made the clarification on Saturday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
Oseni was reacting to an allegation made by the dismissed officers of ASUU-LASU that the university authorities had caged all unions from saying the truth about the happenings in the institution.
NAN reports that the LASU Governing Council had at its 122nd meeting on Sept. 12, promoted 31 academic Staff, 346 non-academic staff and also dismissed eight academic staff members, including the ASUU-LASU Secretary, Assistant Secretary and Treasurer.
The council also approved the dismissal of three non-academic staff on issues bordering on absence from duty, certificate falsification, theft of confidential documents, sale of marks, among others.
The SSANU chairman said that the allegation by the ASUU-LASU secretary that ASUU was the only union challenging the management and still vibrant in the campus was untrue.
“The ASUU officers claim that they were being witch-hunt by the management, because they are the only union still vibrant, while others have been caged was untrue and misleading,” he said.
According to him, the non-academic staff union do not deserve such derogatory statement, having done so much to ensure progress and stability in the university system.
“No union was caged in LASU; we were just being guided by the reality and facts on ground.
“The current management was performing and responsive; so, why do we have to fight them, when, as a union, we are to protect the interest of our members and ensure that their welfare is paramount,” he said.
Oseni said the current management was doing its best in the area of staff welfare, adding that the achievements of the present administration were highly unprecedented compared to past administrations.
He said, as a union leader, they could not be fighting with management that had to ensure the promotion of its staff, prompt payment of salary, sponsored conferences and training, infrastructure development and even academic development.
“That we are not coming out to agitate or challenge the management does not mean that we have been caged; we are only being factual and guided by reality as union leaders.
“While we will continue to demand more for our members as a union, we will do that through constructive dialogue, since the management is a listening and responsive one,” he added.
Oseni said that he was not happy with the ugly incident that befell the ASUU scribes, claiming that he had made several efforts to ensure the issue does not degenerate to such extent.
He, however, advised the embattled ASUU officers and the management to put the interest of the university first and ensure that the rule of law was strictly adhered to.
“It is quite unfortunate, but I am sure that the situation would take care of itself,” Oseni said.