Jubilation, Commendations As Fashola Announces Return To Old Fees Structure At LASU
…Governor salutes Students, Academics, well meaning individuals for role in resolving issues, carpets mischief makers
Aug 7, 2014 - Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) on Thursday announced an approval of the return to the old Lagos State University (LASU) Fees structure amidst thunderous ovation from the students at the 19th Convocation ceremony.
Addressing the students and academic staff at the second day of the convocation of over 11, 000 students at the LASU Main Campus Auditorium in Ojo, the Governor said following very extensive consultations with many segments of the society, government has come to the conclusion that the current realities of the country compel a return to the old school fees regime.
The Governor said the students have shown that they can choose the path of dialogue for conflict resolution by reaching out to him for a revision of their school fees which he had acceded to in consultation with the State Executive Council by doing a reduction of between 30 to 60 percent across board.
He stressed that in spite of this, the students came back to ask for more reduction adding that pleas were also received from parents, well meaning senior citizens on a reduction of the fees to be paid by students in the University.
"We have consulted extensively and come to the conclusion that the current economic realities compel a return to the old fee structure. Accordingly, in response to the approach of the students, their parents and well meaning senior citizens, we have approved a return to the old fees structure", he stressed.
According to the Governor, this decisive step by the State Government should return the school to the path of unimpeded growth and silence mischief makers. "This must put an end to the activities of busybodies who have sought to use a genuine issue of funding of tertiary education in our country in order to gain public recognition. While their contemporaries and other well meaning citizens were promoting genuine conciliatory efforts, they were busy instigating the students and making mischief", he said.
Continuing, the Governor said the market was over for such groups of people. "Our students have shown that they value their education and would not fall prey to fair weather, self seeking people who masquerade as friends but whose real objective is to use the students' genuine demands for their own selfish purpose", he stressed.
Fashola had words of sincere commendation and appreciation for the academic and non academic members of the LASU community for their commitment explaining that in spite of many challenges, the school has been insulated from disruptions of strikes from 2010 till 2014 when a national strike called by ASUU for nine months threatened a four- year unbroken period of progress.
He stressed that in spite of that, the academic and non academic community rallied round the Vice Chancellor to ensure that the graduates who graduated on Wednesday and Thursday could actually experience the feeling that they are experiencing and not lose another semester or session.
He also acknowledged that he has seen the letter of the local Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) informing him of the suspension of the strike they embarked upon and thanked them for choosing dialogue and internal mechanism for dispute resolution.
"This must ultimately be the character of LASU to lead the way away from disruptions and to become a first class global institution where disruptions would be confined to history", he stressed.
He added that all stakeholders must now move on with the developmental work that is taking place in the University, in the Students Arcade Building, the Law Lecture Rooms, the Senate Building, the Central Library, the School of Transportation and the School of Management Services.
He affirmed that the government and the institution's job is to train students and to graduate them at the end of their training to prepare them for the life that lies ahead as no child should spend one day more than is necessary to receive training.
He reiterated that the present administration is determined to ensure that no child who seeks education is left behind and that the work at LASU goes on as the struggle continues with LASU being ultimately the winner.
Earlier in his address, the Chancellor of the University, Sir Molade Okoya- Thomas, urged the aggrieved members of the academic community in the institution to embrace dialogue.
He commended the downward review of the fees by the Governor, saying the various infrastructure projects going on in the school have reached appreciable level and that the school is now reaping the dividends of the investment in the school by the State.
Also speaking, the Pro-Chancellor of the institution, Mr Bode Agusto said the University indeed has some challenges and would expect the stakeholders to assist in providing solutions to some of the problems of the institution.
He stressed that it would involve embracing the private sector and the international community while the workers and the employers must also learn to resolve their differences without embarking on strikes.
The Vice Chancellor, Professor John Obafunwa in his address, said this year's Convocation is significant because it coincides with the 30th year of LASU's establishment by the administration of Alhaji Lateef Jakande, adding that the history of the institution would not be complete without the mention of the footprints of Mr Babatunde Fashola, SAN on the sands of the institution.
Earlier, the Governor had commissioned the University's School of Transport building and undertaken an inspection of the facilities in the School.
Prominent among those who witnessed the event were members of the State Executive Council, including the Commissioner for Education, Mrs Olayinka Oladunjoye and Special Adviser on Education, Otunba Fatai Olukoga, traditional rulers, members of the private sector, students of the institution and academics from far and near.