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UNN ASUU Disowns Faction Loyal To Embattled VC, Insists Prof. Okolo Must Go

Embattled UNN Vice Chancellor, Professor Bartho Okolo.

Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

Members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, university of Nigeria UNN chapter, on Thursday passed a vote of confidence on the Dr. Ifeanyichukwu Abada led executive, just as they insist on the sack of the embattled Vice chancellor Professor Barth Okolo.

Embattled UNN Vice Chancellor, Professor Bartho Okolo.

Embattled UNN Vice Chancellor, Professor Bartho Okolo.

African Examiner reports that a faction loyal to the VC, led by one Adibe Agbo had last week announced the purported suspension of Abada alongside members of his exco.

But at a special congress held at the UNN, which was attended by chairman of the union in Nsukka zone, Dr. Chidi Osuagwu, members threw their weight behind Abada’s leadership, describing Agbo and his group as “rebellious and illegal”.

ASUU-Nsukka zone is made up of the UNN, Enugu State University of Science and Technology, ESUTH, Ebonyi State University, EBSU, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, NAU, Anambra State University and Abia State University ABSU.

The members who graced the congress in their numbers, therefore, unanimously commended Abada and his exco for their doggedness towards pursuing the collective interest of the members.

However, there was a mild drama at the congress as two of the purported executive members of the factional ASUU said they were not part of any congress where Abada and his exco members were suspended.

One of them, Engineer Austin Omah told the congress that “I was not even in the campus the day the purported congress was held. It was at a wedding ceremony that somebody told me congratulations on my election as welfare officer of ASUU. I was not part of any congress, and I here dissociate myself from that group.”

Similarly, another member, Ifeoma Nzekwe, who was named financial secretary also disowned the new ASUU, lamenting that she never took part in any congress.

Addressing members of the union, Osuagwa described Agbo’s action as “a declaration of war on ASUU”.

He warned that the ASUU would not hesitate to deal with all those involved in the factional union.

“I want to address this issue which borders on using the name ASUU; it sounds ridiculous for anybody anywhere to call himself ASUU leader in UNN; it is a war declared on ASUU.

“If any member is aggrieved, let him resort to the constitution, once you take a unilateral action, you have challenged the union.

“Once your action is not covered by this code of practice, your action is not just illegal but spiritually condemnable.

“The only recognized executive is the one elected by you, led by Ifeanyichukwu Abada; whatever anybody has done is null and void”, Osuagwu stressed.

Meanwhile, the ASUU members have vowed to continue their protest, stressing that there was no going back on their demands.

Under the Joint Action Committee, JAC, made up of ASUU, NASU, SSANU and NAAT, they listed the demands to include “the reinstatement of the suspended pro-chancellor, Dr. Emeka Enejere, suspension of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Bartho Okolo, setting up of a judiciary panel of inquiry by the federal government in UNN and immediate stop to illegal internet deductions and refund of such money to staff”.

They are also demanding for the immediate recall of all staff suspended for the past one or two years, lifting of ban on non-promotion of security staff for the past five years, immediate suspension of impact factor clause, implementation of CONTISS II for the staff of University Staff Primary School, among others.

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