THE vice chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti (FUOYE), Professor Kayode Soremekun, has said the Nigerian university system has been over-unionised with the activities of the academic and non-academic bodies causing persistent confrontations between the management and workers.
This conflict of interests, Soremekun believes, is adversely affecting the operations of the country’s ivory towers and diminishing their standards and ranking.
He said: “The university system is over-unionised. But I don’t blame the unionists; they always have genuine cases and agitations, but we should all come together and look for a way not to distract the system.
“There are unions too in other countries, but the kind of biting edge we have is not there. Academic Staff Union of Universities as an idea is good, but as embodied in human forms, we need to have a rethink.
“The over-unionisation has proved to be dangerous to our universities. ASUU, Non-Academic Staff Union and Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities with time will turn into a positive corner and realise that they are also stakeholders in the project called Nigerian universities.”
Soremekun, who addressed journalists in his office in Oye Ekiti campus of the university, also said that public universities could only discharge their duties effectively with robust funding from government, corporate organisations, parents and individuals.
He said FUOYE had moved to the third phase of its developmental agenda with the constitution of a committee to establish a College of Medicine as well as Basic Medical Science and Energy Studies departments.
Soremekun said this would be a follow-up to the establishment of the Faculty of Pharmacy to buoy the academic standard and rating of the institution among its peers.
On the vacant positions of librarian and registrar that are heating up the university, the vice chancellor said, “The governing council has advertised and processes to get the best are on.
He said presently FUOYE has over 80 projects spread across its two campuses operating in Oye and Ikole Ekiti campuses.
He appealed to stakeholders not to see the funding of universities from the narrow prism of sole responsibility of government, saying parents, individuals and corporate bodies all have critical roles to play.