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We’ll not tolerate blind unionism from lecturers – VC

THE Vice-Chancellor of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Prof. Barineme Fakae, has warned that the institution will not tolerate blind unionism targeted at causing confusion in the school.

Barineme, who spoke at a briefing on Monday, explained that lecturers were to pay allegiance to the university authorities and not a union.

Recalling how a group of 20 lecturers gave the state governor, Rotimi Amaechi, a seven-day ultimatum to remove him as the vice-chancellor, Fakae said the lecturers later wrote a letter of service withdrawal to the institution.

Fakae noted that the aim of the lecturers, who were leaders of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, was to cause confusion in the system.

He said, “We are not saying you (union) should not ask for something, but it should not be at the expense of the university and the students. Only the foolish parasite will kill the host. This is because it needs the host to survive.

“But some persons go on blind unionism in order to throw the entire system into chaos and score cheap point. That is what we in this university disagree with. Our stance on this issue has improved the rating of RSUST nationally and internationally, as we are currently number 12 in terms of university rating in Nigeria.

“No union in any way can run as parallel management. We employ staff and not union and the allegiance of the university employee is to his employer and not to the union. Over the years, we have noticed that unionism has become a sub-culture.

“In our own case, we came to a point where people extolled unionism higher than academic excellence. This is sad. That is why we have decided in this university that strike will no more be an option. We are thinking very much about the students.”

On the university’s forthcoming convocation, the vice-chancellor said 4,298 graduates would receive first degree on the occasion.

According to him, three students are to bag First Class Honours while 305 others are to graduate with Second Class Upper Degree.

Fakae noted that the university had inaugurated the Students Record Assessment Management platform so as to make it easier for graduates to apply for their transcript from anywhere around the world without visiting the institution.

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