By Shina Abubakar – Osogbo
Indigenes of Osun State working at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, have raised an alarm of a purported attack on the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Michael Ologunde by some Oyo state indigenes over the protracted crisis in the school.
It was also alleged that some other Osun indigenes working in the institution are also targeted for attack over what is described as usurping the duties of Oyo indigenes.
The alarm was raised by a group of Osun indigenes under the aegis of Osun Forum in a statement signed by its Chairman, Mr. Oladele Osunmakinde and made available to journalists in Osogbo during the weekend.
The group described as unwarranted harassment of Osun indigenes at the Ogbomoso campus of the university during the commendation service in honor of the departed former Provost of the College of Health Sciences, Professor Taiwo Adewole.
It urged indigenes of the two owner states to desist from fanning the ember of disunity and allow the governors of the states to sit together and fashioned out paths to take the institution to greater heights.
The statement reads, “Records indicate that the two owner states have not been adequately alive to their responsibility on salary payments. The Oyo State government in the first three months of salary payments from January to March 2019 released N73 million per month each which amounted to N219million. Though, it later released N295m each for the months of April, May and June 2019.
“When it got to the turn of Osun state, it also released N300 million since for July 2019 till date which is well marginally above what Oyo State paid during her first three months of salary payments. With this record, accusing fingers should not be directed at only one state but rather, the two states should be encouraged to do more for the Institution in rebuilding the legacy of the best state University achieved by the past administrations of Oyo and Osun for several years”.
It regretted that the people who were traditionally brothers are now perceived enemies over a reconcilable disagreement on purported non-payment of staff salary by Osun state government.
The group appealed to Governors Seyi Makinde and Gboyega Oyetola to expedite actions on their planned meeting before ‘xenophobic attack’ becomes legalized in LAUTECH.
The forum emphasized the need for the two owner states to be more committed in their responsibility towards staff welfare both at LAUTECH, Ogbomoso, and the Teaching Hospital, Osogbo, saying doing that would make an issue of funding and ownership crisis a thing of the past.
The group also resolved among other things that, “the two owner states should come out clear and give commitments to the joint ownership of the University and the host community should be encouraged to avoid xenophobic induced agitations as we are kinsmen of same-origin”.
It also urged the two owner states to publish their financial commitment to the institution (University and Teaching Hospital), since the crisis erupted in 2010 by past administrations of the two states.
While appealing to the Governor of Osun, Mr. Gboyega Oyetola, to pay immediate visit to Osun indigenes in LAUTECH, Ogbomoso, to assuage their fears of being seen as foreigners occupying native job positions in LAUTECH, Ogbomoso which is their joint patrimony, the group called on the Federal Government, Oyo and Osun states to provide adequate security for them as the group alleged that its members currently live in fear of being attacked.