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OAU suspends another Students Union leader

The management of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, has suspended a Students’ Union officer, Oluwalade Babatunde, indefinitely for leading a protest against bad welfare conditions.

The university said the suspension will be in place pending police investigation over what the institution tagged criminal activities.

Mr. Babatunde, a 400-level student of the Department of English, who is the chairman of the Transport Management Commission of the union received his letter of suspension Wednesday evening.

According to the letter made available to PREMIUM TIMES, and signed by the Registrar of the institution, Dotun Awoyemi, the student was accused of ”forcefully chasing students out of the class under the guise of protesting an alleged unsatisfactory power supply.”

He is also accused of, ”blocking roads in the campus alongside with others with threat of violence and for seizing the vehicles of members of NURTW and vandalising transport vehicles of others.”

He was ordered to vacate the university and also forbidden from participating in any school activity, within or outside the university campus.

Mr. Babatunde’s suspension appears reminiscent of a trend in Nigerian universities where student leaders are punished for leading students to protest bad welfare conditions such as poor power supply, bad hostels condition, inadequate teaching facilities and so on. Similar suspensions have also been carried out at the University of Ibadan and the University of Lagos.

Mr. Babatunde’s suspension is, however unrelated to the recent suspension of two other officers of the OAU Students Union.

The vice president, Jacob Tosin, and director of socials, Adedayo Afolabi were suspended for engaging in violence over control of money, about N3 million.

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