Saturday, December 7, 2013

ASUU members boo reverend father at Prof. Iyayi's burial

A cross-section of members of the academic community, joined by members of civil society organisations, booed one of the officiating clergymen, during the lying-in-state ceremony held for late former President of the Academic staff Union of Universities, Prof. Festus Iyayi, which held on Friday, at the Akin Deko main auditorium of the University of Benin.

Rev. Fr. Andrew Obiyan, one of the seven officiating priests at the ceremony annoyed virtually all in attendance, when veered of his main business, to tell ASUU about having a rethink about their over five month-old strike.

The priest said many of the lecturers were already wary of the "fight."

He said "Finally, I want to thank God because you (ASUU) have become the voice of the voiceless today. May that voice never die. But I want to remind you that there is no success without sacrifice; for Jesus to gain the whole world he had to give up his life. We give up to go up.

"My humble appeal to you as a minister of God is to kindly request you in the name of God to please surrender the tool of power. Do not give the federal government the privilege of satisfaction of fighting and defeating you. I encourage you to surrender first in this fight. You have made your point eloquently and clear enough.

"Sincere and intelligent Nigerians will consider what you have done and will forever appreciate you for it. Your surrender at this time as a tool of power is the sign of strength, it's not a sign of weakness. Our relationship with God our father shows that faith and trust navigate.

"We may not trust the federal government owing to their antecedents, but I humbly request you to please trust them now."

Speaking with journalists at the end of the ceremony, ASUU President, Dr Nasri Fagge said reaction from the crowd was enough attestation to the mood of majority of union members on the matter.

What do you think? Was the priest right or wrong? What do you think about ASUU booing the priest?

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