LEGAL KEKENKE📄


_____________________________

AAUA STRUGGLE ; A FIGHT FOR ONE OR A FIGHT FOR ALL.

The suspended three days old peaceful protest against tuition hike by Adekunle Ajasin University Students nationwide which is fast spreading like a virus has been on the digital screens of National televisions and it it now a chewing stick in the mouths of students, radio presenters and citizens of Ondo state.

The protest which gained popular support took another dimension on Tuesday, April 10 as market women, Children and indigenes took the foreground of the protest.
This therefore brings to the fore, a pertinent question ; *'Of whose, is this fight?'* and *'to whom shall victory be delivered?'*

At the kickoff of the protest on Monday, April 09, 2018, On arrival at the centre stage as a spectator, correspondent for Legal Kekenke and a representative of the Law Students Society, AAUA, I marvelled at the multitudinous number of Nigerian students loitering and shuffling across Oba-Adesida road, Akure. They stood as a legion. Then it became very unmistakable that the students are truly aggrieved by the skyrocketed tuition fee and are resolved to resist the Government and fight for themselves.

At the outset, one could easily conclude that the fight was for 'AAUAITES' and that they were bent on resisting the tuition hike with no violence even after teargas attack was launched on the peaceful students followed by several arrests by the Nigerian Police.

The story began to change, when more actors trooped in to the centre stage. Just after the dispersal by teargas attack, AAUA reconvened to the road, this time not as a loner but with another multitude of students from *Federal University Of Technology, Akure, Ondo State University Of Technology, Okitipupa, University of Medical Sciences, Ondo and Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo among others plus the body of National Association of Ondo State Students and National Association of Nigerian Students*.

This great coalition of over two thousand Nigerian Students could not have been a benign intimidation to the government. They shook Akure streets with chants and placards and remained peaceable all through, thereby bringing Nigeria Police to its knees.

Just the second day to the protest, the unexpected happened, another sets of actors joined the stage.
Parents especially Mothers, Market women, Children and Youths took to the centre stage to join the struggle.

_They are not students, why do they need to join the protest to the extent of leading same?_
One answer immediately comes to mind, these are the sets of persons who would make the herculean payment now or later. They work out their lives to see their wards in school even though they earn very little in the markets and from the same government.

It is quite interesting to unveil some other factors which erupted the zeal and interests of parents to the protest:
(i) There has been a pre-existing grudges and vexations in Ondo state citizens against the Governor who they claim has contributed nothing or little to the development of the state since inception. This grudge could not be condoled when the medical bill for pregnant women was increased. According to an aggrieved woman ; _'Giving birth used to be free until this man came on board'._

(ii) The well organized peaceful protest attracted and appealed to the senses of these market women.
At the centre stage many were heard saying; _'We ought to be leading this protest, not this children. It is our fight. Aketi has offended us'._

In the true sense, the students would have missed the support of these parents if the first day of protest had turned violent or was hijacked by miscreants.

(iii) The need to shield the protesting students from unnecessary attacks . The parents as well as  the students saw a need to place the old women at the protest's foreground. Since that would make the police reluctant to unleash any form of attack on the protesters. Although, this was disproved at the entrance of the Governor's Office when the police opened fire if teargas on the parents and students.
It is quite reasonable that the police had thought the protesters would harm the Governor who was accosted on Wednesday at Union Bank road, Alagbaka but escaped to the Governor's office but was fiercely chased by protesters. There was a funny statement making rounds at that point that ; _'Our Governor is now a bush rat running from his hinters'._
The aforementioned factors and many more turned the whole of Ondo State against its Government, thereby turning a protest which from the outset was for one(AAUA) to a fight for all(Ondo State).
In reality, seeing parents on the centre stage of protest painted a picture of *1929 Aba Women riot* of history.

It is therefore right and safe to have an headline capturing the whole event as 'Ondo state resists, Kicks against, criticize, condemn its Government over tuition hike'.

Without prejudice the several protesters across the country, especially Lagos state, Ekiti, Ikare, Owo, Cross River and others were inclusive actors in the suspended struggle.

On a conclusive note, it is inconspicuous that the afore raised questions on 'whose fight it is' has been firmly answered *_for it is a fight for Ondo state and Victory shall be delivered not just to AAUA students but entirety of Ondo State._*

It is a fight of All against One   of which Victory is certain lest revolution becomes inevitable.

As negotiations go on between the Governor and Students Union, all students look up to the Student Union Representative for non compromise of the agitation.

_Olufowose Samuel is a staff writer for Legal Kekenke_

*LK*
*_...making a statement._*

No comments