Student Unionism Should Come Back Alive-Falana

Lagos constitutional lawyer and human right activist, Femi Falana has advocate for comrades and students to be united in order to adopt various methods of revitalizing the students’ union movement, emphasizing the importance youths have to play in moulding the future.

Falana was speaking at the 20th Anti corruption Situation Room(ACRS) an occasion he chaired, with the theme” Harnessing the potentials of students’ Unionism and activists towards the promotion of good governance, transparency and accountability in Nigeria.

In his statement, the legal luminary, said: “The NASS is permanently engage in violence and of course students leaders today are either agents of the Vice Chancellors, the government of the day or other negative forces while student union are banned or proscribed whenever students ask any question that are critical, therefore, this meeting is of fundamental importance.”

Director, of Ford Foundation, and Founder/ CEO, Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing, Innocent Chukwuma, a panelist at the Webiner, organized by HEDA Resources Centre, narrated how as a student, unionism was an ideological struggle.

“The east and the west, you either align with the east or the west. If you align with the east you will be grounded in socialism and communist ideologies, and we had literature all over campuses that enable us to get up to speed with the happenings, soon, the movement began to be divided and the triumph of capitalism over socialism, though temporary at that time, eroded the ideological base of the struggle and what came in  its place is what we might call identity politics” he recount.

The Innoson boss, while speaking on, setting agenda for a broad based social engagement of ex-student leaders in the current governance milieu, stressed the needs for political education among current student union leaders.

Presidential aspirant in the 2009 election, and also an activist, Omoyele Sowore posited that comrades who have been involved in the struggle for good governance, transparency and accountability should begin to document their struggle in the form of detention diaries, books and even documentaries.

“It is not optional, we must document the history of the students’ movement. Action Aid, Country Director, Ene Obi, relate one of many opportunities actors in the society movement missed to participate in governance.

“I remember when Abacha made a call that people should go and contest for Local Government elections, all comrades then said we didn’t want to get involved in politics. The result is that today, we are still struggling.”

 The ACSR is a quarterly situational analysis programme that presents a platform for stakeholders in the fight against corruption to meet and share thoughts, concern, and challenges.


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