By Nnadi Ifeanyichukwu
There is no problem without a root cause or origin. In the case of unstable and dilapidated leadership amongst Students Leadership in Imo State, (National Association of Imo State Students, as a point of reference), I think the root cause and foundation of the problems bedeviling the leadership is the unchecked activities of the Student Bodies and their Leaders in the State.
It is evident through past events that if people, institutions, and organizations are allowed to function and carry out activities unabated, and without properly checkmating them, bad leadership is imminent. This is exactly the worrisome situation amongst Students Bodies in Imo State, and as a Student leader, the need to lend my voice.
Permit me at this very point to be very blunt in my assertions. In Imo State, the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Students Affairs, is not effectively functioning, and carrying out its duties to the Students, especially as it concerns Students relationship with Government.
The Office of the SSA Students Affairs, should have by now, come up with visible and viable strategies, and action plans that ensures student leaders are very accountable. It should also monitor the transparent implementation of government interventions on Students.
Evey Students intervention from the State Government should pass through the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Students Affairs, to ensure that such interventions gets to the targeted audience.
Unfortunately, things are not that way in Imo State, where the Office exists only in theory and not in practice. The Office is being relegated to the background and Student Leaders go about carrying out activities unchecked, and unmonitored. Sincerely this is preposterous.
For me, this ugly development does not go without some reasons which are;
- Students Organizations in the State are not given proper orientation to recognize the Office of this SSA to the Governor on Students Affairs as the only bridge and sure channel to get the attention of the State Government. We do not show proper solidarity to this Office to ensure it becomes unavoidably relevant in the State, and this is unfair.
- Those that have made efforts to reach out to the Office are unfortunately met with cold shoulders and reprimanded attitude by the Office Henchman, Hon. Oparaji Franklin. An attitude which is very discouraging.
- The Government on its side have not reposed enough confidence on the Office to empower it enough to carry out its duties judiciously. If not, I do not see any reason why any empowerment will be done in the State for the students, through the Office of the First Lady, without the SSA Students Affairs, being a witness to it, and being furnished with every detail of the empowerment, and further charged to ensure its equitable and transparent implementation and distribution.
The Office of the first Lady is too busy to properly monitor compliance to these empowerments, that is why the Students Affairs Directorate is there to serve as a bridge between Government and the Students.
If things were being done the right way, the issues of one person diverting the empowerment funds and materials of many Students would not have sprang up because there would have been an implementation Team, headed by the SSA Students Affairs, to monitor strict compliance.
The attention of the SSA Students Affairs and the State Government should be drawn to some of these issues because it is really affecting the welfare of Imo Students a lot. It’s time to revitalize and make that offic…
Nnadi, Ifeanyichukwu (Mayor)
National President, National Association of Mbano Students (NAMS)