NANS set to continue protest at national airports
Members of the National Association of Nigerian Students are set to change the venue of their protest from the Sagamu-Interchange of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos today. The students are protesting in reaction to the ongoing strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
Information received from the students is that they will commence their protests at the nation’s airports today; meanwhile the officers of the police command have said that the students “are free to come out and see what awaits them.”
NANs National Taskforce Chairman, Olumide Ojo, told one of our correspondents that the association was aware of the Federal Government’s plan to mobilise the military against its protest. He said the move would, however, not stop the association’s protest at the Lagos airport.
Ojo said, “We can secure ourselves against external forces. We are aware that the Federal Government is mobilising the military to the venue of our protest but that will not stop us from barricading the airport.
“Since last Tuesday, we have been grounding the major highways from Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to Guru Maharaji, we blocked Gbongan and so on. These are the roads being used by the masses, so we decided to focus on the routes government officials use most, which are the international airports and others.
“Nigerians should reschedule their flights because tomorrow (today) will be grounded. No one will go out, no one will come in.”
NANS Coordinator, Zone D, Adegboye Olatunji also confirmed the development in a separate interview. He noted that the Lagos airport would be the first among the airports to be grounded by the students.
“The airport is the nation’s gateway. Certainly, we have existing security operatives at the airport and when there are things like this, security is further beefed up.’’
On the other hand, the National President, ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, in an interview, commended the students for fighting for their rights.
“We commend NANS members for fighting for their rights. It is their right. The pro-chancellors are doing well too. We hope the government will listen to them because they (pro-chancellors) understand what is happening in the Nigerian universities,” he said.
Osodeke also said that it would honour the invitation of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila to a meeting on Tuesday. The Muslim Media Watch Group has urged the leadership of NANS to reconsider its decision to occupy the nation’s airports.