BENIN—Edo State Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, University of Benin branch, are at loggerheads as the union accused the government of alleged lawlessness in the demolition of property belonging to the university.
But the government, through the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Prince Kassim Afegbua, described the allegation as baseless, saying that the said property belongs to the state government after it won the suit at the lower court and Court of Appeal. Zonal Coordinator of UNIBEN ASUU, Dr Anthony Monye-Emina, who addressed journalists yesterday, alleged that Governor Adams Oshiomhole had promised to compensate the lecturers affected by the earlier demolition but was surprised that the government went on to demolish the entire property when part of the matter was still before the court. But Afegbua said, “It is very unfortunate that members of ASUU who ordinarily should be knowledgeable about the dynamics of government can descend to the level of using gutter language to describe a popularly elected governor of the state. “This damning conclusion is not only derived from sheer sentiments and poor scholarship but also a product of intellectual inertia.” As much as one finds it irritating to respond to this category of turncoat academics, who, rather than intervene on this matter in a very dispassionate manner, have decided to invoke political sentiments, it is appropriate to set the records straight. “On the property matter, judgment was entered in favour of Edo State Government in December, 2014. The University of Benin filed for stay of execution of the judgment at the Court of Appeal, and judgment was also given in favour of Edo State Government. Barely a week ago, we heard that they have filed notice of Appeal at the Court of Appeal again.”