The University of Lagos (UNILAG) management has postponed the 2016/2017 Convocation Ceremonies earlier scheduled to hold earlier scheduled to hold from Monday, February 19th to Thursday, February 22nd, 2018.
The postponement is not unconnected to the industrial action by the nonacademic staff unions on the university’s campus.
Sources within the school told EduCeleb.com that the impending unrest that may emanate if the university carried on with its initial plans to hold the convocation accounted for the postponement.
Members of the unions include, the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU), the Non Academic Staff Union (NASU) and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAATS), had embarked on a strike since December 4th, 2017.
The unions, under the aegis of the Joint Actions Committee (JAC), were protesting the non-implementation of agreement they entered into with the Federal government in 2009, among other matters.
They were also protesting the sharing formula of the N23 billion released by the Federal government as part of earned allowance of workers of federal universities across the country.
The National President of the JAC, Mr Samson Ugwoke, had while declaring the strike in December said it would be ‘comprehensive, total and indefinite’.
Confirming the postponement, the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Oluwatoyin Ogundipe noted that a suitable date for the ceremony would be announced in due course.
A statement from the university explaining the rationale for the postponement read thus:
“This is as a result of the challenges posed by the ongoing strike embarked upon by members of the non –academic labour unions of universities.
“The activities of these unions have the potential of snowballing and marring the carefully laid out arrangements already put in place for the ceremony,’’ he said.
Professor Ogundipe stated that though arrangements for a successful ceremony were already at an advanced stage, the institution would not give room for anything that might cause any form of inconvenience or embarrassments to invited guests.
“The university remains committed to providing a conducive atmosphere that would foster quality teaching and research as well as produce graduates that can compete with their counterparts globally.
“Hence, members of the community are enjoined to continue their lawful activities,’’ the management added.