Agu Christian is the new UNN SUG President
The Princess Alexandra Auditorium (PAA), University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), was filled to capacity as students gathered to witness the inauguration and swearing in ceremony of the Student Union Government (SUG) executives and cabinet members. Comarde Agu, Christian, a 300 level student from the department of Education Economics emerged as the newly elected SUG President.
The University of Nigeria Nsukka, Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Bartho Okolo congratulated the winners as well as commended the Dean of Student Affairs and Chairman, University of Nigeria Electoral Commission (UNECO), Prof. Okpan K. Oyeoku for the peaceful manner in which the election was conducted “The election was credible and the students comported themselves”. He remarked “Nothing can be more challenging than being called by your peers to lead them, to protect their interest when they are not there. It is therefore, a position of trust and sincerity”. He urged the new leaders to serve as a link between the university administration and the other students who elected them into office. Prof. Okolo added that they should be leaders who would place the interest of their followers above theirs.
He promised that his administration would be sensitive to student’s welfare, as well as ensure that students were comfortable so they would effectively compete favorably with their counterparts outside Nigeria.
Also, Prof. Oyeoku in his speech advised the new leaders to chat the way of peace and progress so that it can be well with them, their fellow students and UNN. He applauded UNECO members for their efforts in conducting a free and fair election which was credible.
Prof. Oyeoku also thanked the Vice-Chancellor for restoring student unionism in UNN as this would afford students the opportunity to learn the rudiments of politics while in school before they venture into politics in the larger world.
He admonished the winners “this is a responsibility that God has put on you, do the work for which you were elected and not fail the university, students and your parents”.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Presidency on Youth and Student Matters, Comrade Jude Imagine (MON) commended President Goodluck Jonathan for seeing student’s unionism as an agent of good leaders. He advised students “learn to dream big but you have to start small and be void of social vices on campus. Stay away from contempt, disruption and comport yourselves properly so that others can emulate your lifestyle”. To the in-coming president, he advised him to cover the gap that was created during the period of no unionism.
Delivering a charge, the Chaplain of St Peter’s Chaplaincy UNN, Rev. Fr. Msgr. Taddeo Onoyima admonished the elected leaders to work with the university administration in order to form a liaison between the Vice-Chancellor and the students. He counseled them to learn to be disciplined so that others could emulate them. “It is a privilege to lead, so do not misuse that opportunity”.
Meanwhile, a former SUG President, Rev. Ike Anaga congratulated the Vice-Chancellor for transforming UNN. “I am glad that we are gradually restoring the dignity of man”. He informed the newly elected leaders that the students were their constituency and should never be compromised. “Leadership is a call for service not to lord it over the led. Build a team and together you would achieve more and above all learn to pray for the students and the success of your administration”, he said. He charged them to leave a good legacy that would speak for them in years to come.
The SUG President, Comrade Agu in his acceptance speech exclaimed that today marked a history in UNN and lauded the efforts of the Vice-Chancellor for reinstating SUG. He said “my government would build a pragmatic, dynamic and effective students unionism where transparency and welfare of students will be our utmost priority”.
He added that his executive would strive to maintain a positive student-management relationship by bridging the information gap between the management and the students, stressing that nothing good had ever come out of violence, therefore his government would adopt diplomatic means in tackling issues with the management.
Highpoint of the ceremony was the swearing-in ceremony of 9 Executives, 34 House of Representatives and 24 Senate members which was administered by the Deputy Director, Legal Services, Barr. Mattew Obayi. It would be recalled that student unionism was banned in UNN about 5 years ago as a result of students’ unrest.
In attendance were representatives of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) Zone B, SUG officials from Enugu campus among others.