The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Osun State University Branch has awarded scholarships to four indigent but brilliant students of the University in its 2023 Indigent Students Scholarship Award.
The Acting Chairperson, UNIOSUN Branch of ASUU, Comrade Olaosebikan Wende, who spoke while presenting the award to the beneficiaries at the main campus of the University in Osogbo on Tuesday, disclosed that the awards were in two categories; ASUU National Award and ASUU UNIOSUN Branch Award.
He noted that two out of the beneficiaries won N200,000 each for the National category, while the remaining two got N100,000 each for the Branch award.
The university Don maintained that the award, which started in 2018, was part of the Union’s contributions to nation-building and efforts aimed at ensuring there is no limitation to the education of brilliant indigent students.
Presenting the awards on behalf of ASUU President, Comrade Wende noted that the students were selected based on their outstanding results and exemplary performances at the rigorous screening exercise conducted in November and subsequent ratification of their selection by the Branch Congress held in December, 2023.
Wende added that Akala Itunuoluwa, a 200 level student of History & International Studies and Owojori Excellent, a 200 level student in Medicine & Surgery Departments got the National award while Wahab Kamolideen Omotayo, a 500 level student of Civil Engineering and Awofesobi Kolade Peace, a 500 level student of Electrical and Electronic Engineering Departments won the Branch award.
While congratulating the beneficiaries, Comrade Wende urged them to judiciously channel the funds towards advancing their academic pursuits, stating that the Union is perturbed by the rising number of “out of school” youths in Nigerian Universities.
He appealed to governments to adequately fund education and to stop indiscriminate granting of operational licences to agencies or individuals to establish universities. He also urged political office holders to stop looting the national commonwealth so that Nigerian youths can have unhindered access to a brighter future and employment opportunities through qualitative university education.
While charging the Nigerian youths to shun vices such as cultism, banditry, prostitution, drug abuse and other violent criminalities, he implored the Federal Government to immediately implement the re-negotiated ASUU/FGN Agreement submitted by the Late Nimmy Briggs-led Committee, defray the eight (8) months withheld salaries and other allowances owed members of the Union.
Responding on behalf of the recipients, the elated Akala Itunuoluwa appreciated the Union President, Comrade Emmanuel Osodeke, the Coordinator of Ibadan Zone, Comrade Oyebamiji Oyegoke, the Acting Chairperson of ASUU UNIOSUN and members of ASUU nationwide for the kind gesture. She promised that they will use the funds to pay their tuition fees, adding that they will propagate the generous ideals of ASUU among their fellow students.
Her words, “We are deeply appreciative of the support and recognition you have provided to us through this scholarship programme.”
“Your dedication to fostering academic excellence and creating opportunities for students has been truly inspiring.
Receiving this scholarship has not only alleviated the financial burden associated with pursuing higher education but has also motivated us to strive for greater academic achievements. Your belief in our potential serves as a driving force for us to excel in our academic endeavours.”
“We will carry the lessons learned and values instilled by this experience throughout our academic and professional journeys. We look forward to making the most of this opportunity and giving back to society in the near future. Your support has made a lasting impact on our lives, and we are truly grateful for the opportunities that lie ahead.”
Also speaking, one of the parents of the beneficiaries who was in attendance, Mr Owojori Binjamin Olayinka appreciated the union, adding: “Words are not sufficient for one to express one’s appreciation.”
He pointed out that public universities were open to all until things lately turned around and children of the poor could no longer afford university education. He commended ASUU for the initiative, adding that if poor people do not have access to education, they would turn out to be torn on the flesh of the children of the rich.
Members of the Branch Expanded Executive Committee present at the event included Comrades Muktar Abanikannda, Adeniyi Nasir, Ibrahim Ogundoyin, Sunday Adeniyi, Margaret Faremi, Musedeeq Lawal, Zachaeus Olonade, Victor Akinduro, Sunday Adeyemi, Rabiu Iyanda and Damilare Adekomi.
Also speaking, the branch secretary and treasurer, comrades Damilare Adekomi and Ibrahim Ogundoyin rejoiced with the students on the awards. They corroborated the chairperson’s remark that the process was rigorous and also affirmed that the students’ performances in the screening exercise attest to their intellectual prowess and go further to show that better days are ahead of them all. They admonished them to face their studies and endeavor to be conscious of the vision of ASUU and its mission regarding quality education for all.