INTERVIEW: Adewale considering legal actions after FUNAAB expulsion
Despite his expulsion from the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta for insubordination to University officials and defamation of character, Ifemosu Micheal Adewale believes he was “unfairly” punished for speaking out on behalf of the students.
Adewale, a 200 level student of the Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management who was expelled by the management on October 18 after addressing an open letter to the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Felix Salako, on his Facebook page complaining about the happenings in the school.
In his letter back in July, drew the attention of the management to some challenges affecting students of the institution, including harassment from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
In an exclusive interview with Gateway Gist, Adewale said his message to the Vice-Chancellor was not politically motivated and he remains shocked by the management’s decision.
“Ignore talks claiming it was political. The reason for the letter was borne out of my experiences. I was a victim of everything,” he said.
“It is also something ravaging the vast majority of students of the institution. When issues like this arise, most people would try to pitch several notions. Kindly ignore those. I am not a student leader. I am just a regular student in the school.
“This isn’t my first time writing open letters. I have been doing this since 2010. It’s not the first of its kind.
“I thought about it. I was shocked and felt weakened. It wasn’t like I was called that there’s an expulsion letter waiting for me. It was something I walked up to but it’s one of those things.
“That’s the price people like us pay for standing up for the majority. It’s just one of those things.”
While waiting for a chance to appeal the management’s decision, Adewale is currently out of class and he is considering legal action against the University if he is not reinstated soon.
Last week, renowned human rights activist and Nigerian lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) disclosed his intention to help Adewale in his fight for justice.
“I haven’t received any [support]. A wise man once told me we can always move forward and should only move forward in life. At the moment, no organisation has actually reached out to me for support,” he continued.
“Some set of people believe that this is a cheat on freedom of speech and expression. So pending when I get my studentship back, I would have to maintain internal mechanism and peradventure if those don’t work out, there would be need for that.
“For now, different lawyers have been on the case and the most recent being Mr Femi Falana (SAN) which trended days ago. He said, he is interested in taking it up and I think that is the way to go for me and it’s also a plus.”