Comrades, sympathisers, friends, colleagues, alumni, members of the global academia, pressmen here present, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Ojo Aderemi, the President of the University of Ibadan Students Union.

Before I pass on the full text of my Press statement, I wish to commend my fellow students on their doggedness and resilience so far. I wish to state that the courage I have is due to the support I have gotten from members of our Union so far. I also wish to thank especially the indefatigable Executive Committee members of the Students Union for their dedication towards this cause so far. The Students Representative Council through its head has been committed to the struggle so far and is still committed to future struggles. We all have come to realise that leading a Union is not a tea party. It takes all from you including your personal life. Many of us haven’t rested since we won elections down to this point. Those days of toil are not over yet. In fact, we are just starting.


I wish to give a sincere background to the protests. A sincere background and not a political one. However, being a participant and leader of the movement (which will never die) I must take a position. A position of justice and righteousness. In all sincerity the May 29 Students Protest was a just course which till the end of my being will be one of -if not the most -memorable events I have witnessed. A validly constituted Congress whose resolutions had popular support due to the sincerity of the leaders who went as far as going from room to room to invite UItes for the Congress. The agenda of the Congress was communicated face to face to the members of the Union whom we met. We were less than 24 days in office when the protests happened. We did abide by the decisions of Congress as contained in my manifesto. The entire Union leadership acted according to the policy of the Congress.

The Congress itself is not without history. On April 22, Congress resolved that if students do not receive their identity cards two weeks before exams, there will be strike actions. The moderators of the Congress emphatically told the Congress that the resolutions were binding on the ‘next’ era. True, one unchangeable principle of the Students Union of the University of Ibadan is continuity. If you cannot abide by the resolutions of a General Meeting, then you have no business being part of the administrative cadre of the Union. We are forever bound by this principle and if the people in power would learn this, Africa would have developed a better system than this. Congress on April 22 also took interest in the cases of students who were unjustly rusticated/expelled from school. Prior to that Congress, the students have not been served their letters by which they would have the right to appeal to the council. Immediately after the Congress, their letters were released for them to appeal. The Union started proper monitoring of their cases before I was elected at all. The issue of hotplate was historical too. However, previous administrations had made sure there was a template which would favour students and cut costs. There was a heavy attack on students, especially those in female halls. The Union took interest in that too for which it proposed that a welfare board meeting be held as soon as possible. I’ll also state here that students don’t trust the authorities due to communication gaps and a variety of other reasons.

All these culminated in the strike action of May 29. We are soon to be workers and as such we are a class of people struggling against another class. The Union must at all times get interested in the welfare of students all the time and this must be the shibboleth of the policies of the leaders. The May 29 protest was an exercise of the democratic rights of students. End of moral lesson!


In the course of the struggle, we became open to certain realities considering the delay in the exams. They are;

  1. That the ID cards might not be ready anytime sooner than July;
  2. That there is an ongoing referendum within ASUU;
  3. That the Labour Union might proceed on industrial actions soon;
  4. That the strike might be indefinite.
  5. Other issues regarding the students’ protest are being attended to.

Based on these realities, we do wish to take a position in the interest of fellow students. They are;

  1. That the University be reopened and the first semester exams be conducted in peace;
  2. That the leadership should shift ground on the ID cards and allow the students to write the exams;
  3. That the Students Union be reinstated;
  4. We are open to dialogue.

We assure all students that their interests will never be compromised come what may. Symposiums and seminars will be organized to ensure continuous political engagements. Continuous feedback is guaranteed.

On behalf of the entire leadership of the Students Union, I hereby wish you success in your forthcoming exams. Yours in progress

Ojo, Aderemi

UI SU President (2016/2017 session)


Ojo, Aderemi is a Historian, teacher, public speaker, writer, politician, and community organiser. He was trained at the University of Ibadan and was President of the Students Union.

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