The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Lagos State University (LASU) Chapter, says claims by the university that it was ‘abetting illegal operation of its bank account’ was false.
A letter by ASUU-LASU dated Jan. 14 and addressed to the university’s Vice -Chancellor, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, said “no union can illegally operate its own account”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the union’s letter LASU authorities was signed by the its Secretary, Dr Tony Dansu and the Assistant Secretary, Dr Adeolu Oyekan.
LASU management had earlier on Monday directed an immediate suspension of the remittance of check-off dues of its lecturers who were members of ASUU.
The management said it received a petition signed by about 70 per cent of ASUU-LASU members to that effect.
The university said the petition alleged that the union’s erstwhile Chairman, Dr Isaac Oyewunmi, who was dismissed from LASU, remained a signatory to the union’s bank account despite being a staff of another institution.
It said that the remittance of the check – off dues into the Union’s Bank accounts remained suspended pending when the management and operation of the account(s) are properly regularized.
It recalled that the LASU Governing Council on Sept. 7, 2017 dismissed Oyewunmi for misconduct bordering on extortion of money from students.
Dr Adebowale Adeyemi-Suenu, erstwhile Vice- Chairman of ASUU-LASU, was also dismissed for misconduct bordering on manipulation of students results.
The management said by virtue of their dismissal, they ceased to be members of ASUU-LASU from Sept. 7, 2017 but reports reaching it confirmed that both Oyewunmi and Adeyemi-Suenu have illegally been collecting monthly allowance of N50,000 each from the general monthly deductions of ASUU-LASU members.
However, ASUU -LASU said in line with the constitution and extant practices of its union, only the ASUU National Executive Council (NEC) could determine and recognize the leadership of, and signatories to a branch’s account.
“In this instance, Oyewunmi is the recognized Chairman in the ASUU-LASU branch of our union.
” You would please recall that Oyewumi was purportedly dismissed on what the union regards as false allegations and trumped -up charges of ‘demand for money from students’ and not for ‘extortion of money from students’ as claimed .
“You would also recall that the purported dismissal of the chairman is still a subject of litigation in a competent court of law.
“It is therefore expected that as a Senior Advocate and a law teacher for several years, you should know that this matter is sub- judice,” the union said.
According to the union, the N50,000 monthly allowance being collected by Oyewumi and Adebowale-Suenu from the general monthly deductions of members of ASUU-LASU was not only erroneous but clearly demonstrates a crass lack of understanding of the workings of the union.
“For the avoidance of doubt, check-off deductions of all members including that of ASUU-LASU belong to the national body of our union.
“In line with the commitment to and in solidarity with victimized members; it often gives a monthly stipend until the determination of their illegal dismissal by a competent court of law.
“ASUU-LASU is only discharging this obligation on behalf of the national body,” the union said.
ASUU -LASU expressed disappointment that the LASU VC’s office intended to usurp the sacred responsibility of its national body which is unsolicited.
“In view of the foregoing, our union wishes to counsel that the university administration under your leadership, retrace its steps from this ignoble path which has become unfashionable in the annals of this university,” the union said.