A former President, National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Abdul Mahmud, has asked the association to blot his name from its record over Thursday’s courtesy call on President Muhammadu Buhari.
Mahmud, a lawyer, made the call via his Twitter handle on Friday after the controversial Aso Rock visit by NANS’ national and zonal leadership.
The visit came days after NANS leadership accused ASUU, which has been on strike for weeks, of pursuing its own selfish interest.
“While we noted with grave concern the insincerity of the government in addressing ongoing problems in our public universities, we also discovered ASUU is out for its selfish interest.
“What they tell us as students is different what what they present to the government when they go to the negotiation table with the government. They are just after their personal interest and not the interest of the students they claimed. So enough is enough. We have our own ways of tackling the issue and we should not be pushed to resort to that,” said NANS Zone C Coordinator, Suleiman Sarki.
But Mahmud accused the NANS leadership of lacking a sense of history and abandoning its friends.
He said, “As the 8th President of NANS (1990-1992), I ask that my name be removed from all records and archives of the association. I shall issue a formal statement to this effect.
“Recall that following the election of Bamidele Akpan President NANS a few months ago, NANS got in touch with me to seek support for his leadership and request for a visit to my office.
“You subsequently sent me an invitation to your “Save Education Rally” pursuant to the Academic Reform (ACAREF) Programme I launched in March 1991.
“I declined your requests because I was abroad and still abroad. I promised the association and leadership audience on my return to the country.
“That promise has now been nullified by the following: 1) the reckless threat issued to ASUU to forcefully eject its members from their homes 2) the ill-advised visit to Aso Rock, at a time students reel under the pain of strikes.
“It is your choice to decide your programmes of action, but the choice does not include threatening ASUU, the historical ally of NANS- alliance that dates back to 1982.
“Nor does it include the visit to
President Muhammadu Buhari , the then dictator who gave Nigerian students bullets when they asked for bread in 1984.
“Recall that in 1984 when Buhari attempted to hike tuition fees and hostel fees, withdraw feeding and ban students unionism in higher institutions, NANS resisted him.
“That year – 1984 – NANS, which was 4 years old at the time was banned by Buhari and its President, Lanre Arogundade, arrested and locked up in Ife Prison till he was overthrown by IBB in 1985.
“Only a generation without a sense of history will continue to walk the shamed path you have walked since 1999.
You all have the choice to either discover, fulfill, or betray your mission. Thanks NANS.”