There is a time when an experience, whether sweet or bitter, ends. It is now days till the curtain is finally drawn on the Adeoye Adejare’s tenure as the President of the Association of Faculty of Arts Students. For many AFASite, President Adeoye Adejare tenure divides opinions: there cannot be a uniformed remark on his administration. But it is interesting that, the cloud seems very clear when last year the baton of leadership passed from Mr. Emeka Aniagboso to Mr. Adeoye Adejare. AFASites appetites were whetted – interestingly by Mr. Adejare, himself, and therefore, it is not surprising the high expectations that have been the lot of his administration. The question that has dogged his administration as it clock ticks down still remains: has Adeoye Adejare matched his own wordy expectations?
The president got AFASites to his campaign train with what people have come to name ‘his facile voluble tongue’. No other candidate in recent history could match his silver-tongued conversational skills- not even the current candidates coveting his seat can near him when it comes to mouth-wooing voters. It was a lost election for his two rivals at the poll. Their composure and promises thinned when placed side by side with Adeoye’s. The election became, therefore, a walk in the park. Setting those backgrounds for his administration, Adeoye Adejare was set for a tenure that would be asked lots of questions at every point in time. He raised the bar for himself with his “expanding the frontiers of intellectualism.” He got it wrong, therefore, each time he complained about the criticism that poured on his administration. A leader must be ready to receive knocks and pinches from his followers. They are corrective knocks and pinches meant to set the leader’s feet straight when he deviates from the right track. And the press, as the fourth estate of the realm, has every responsibility to be the hands and knuckles of the populace when the time comes for a leader to receive his corrective knocks and pinches but Adeoye Adejare seems averse to criticism, especially from the press.
The Adeoye Adejare’s tenure should be appreciated for some noteworthy successes which should not go unnoticed. The standout remains the Mike Okiro E-learning centre that was commercialized. The once moribund centre has since become a hub of business activities; and it is about the cheapest business centre on campus. Despite the fact that the Adeoye Adejare’s led administration did not collect a dime from the Faculty to renovate the centre, the faculty will now generate a sum of ₦100,000 annually from those managing it. Also, the Adeoye Adejare’s administration made a good and sensible bargain that made the services rendered affordable. This feat had been elusive to previous administrations which always almost made the Faculty’s management want to seize the facilities from the Association; hence, a big kudos to Mr. Adeoye Adejare and his team.
Furthermore, another plus for the administration is the sanity that was brought on and the renovations carried out in the Association’s secretariat. This, in fact, had been a blighting mark on previous administrations. Adeoye Adejare’s administration broke the norm and made sure AFAS secretariat became a secretariat in name and indeed. The door got back their keys, louvers returned to the windows, the tables and chairs got standing firmly again, the floor started to feel loved when it was kept neat; and importantly discipline and a sense of propriety became the defining mood in the offices. Mr. Kolapo Lawal, the outgoing General Secretary, deserves some special recognition for his disciplined disposition towards the running of the secretariat. He has set the bar high for the next General Secretary of the Association!
Also, the administration was able to organise a successful dinner. In the past years, AFASites had always been disappointed by the executive as the dinner organised always ender a flop but this administration organised a dinner that gave AFASites a wonderful experience. According to sources, this time, the executive were strict as they did not allow anyone without a ticket into the hall and this contributed to the success of the dinner with AFASites having food and drinks to their satisfaction.
However, it is not wrong for anyone or any organ in the Association to question the tardiness and negligence that seemed to have dogged the Adeoye Adejare administration in some areas. The so called traditional activities expected to be carried out by every administration were either done so late or so uncoordinatedly. Whatever the president makes for an excuse, it is still a fact that the now customary AFAS and I programme was not organised at the normal time. Meanwhile, the orientation programme organised for freshmen lost every gloss it could have had due to its lack of effective organisation and coordination. The event, just like any other event organised by this administration, never commenced at the scheduled time in spite of the excessive hype that had been used to get people interested in it.
Moreover, it can be said that the president dug his own destructive pit in the manner he ran his administration. Psyching people up in order to get them along is not a bad idea. One of the flaws of this administration is its building-castle-in-the-air system of courting AFASites interests in its activities. Without much forethought, an event like the excursion was packaged in such a way that minimal success would not eventually satisfy AFASites. No amount of explanation will suffice for the disappointment some AFASites got from an event that had been touted as a heaven-on-earth trip which eventually became an almost a shambolic trip. Much, also, has been said about the abandoned AFASites in Badagry!
It is in the light of the foregoing that a charge is made to the incoming administration to learn from the failures and successes of the outgoing administration. History becomes utile when one learns sensibly and correctly from it. Mr. Adeoye Adejare must have switched on the reflective mood and begun assessing critically his administration’s low points and few high points. Well assessed, it is an assessment that will serve in good stead in future endeavour. Meanwhile, every other AFASite and anybody at all will do well to learn from the Adeoye Adejare’s experience that is coming to an end sooner than later.
Meanwhile, new leaders will be elected into the AFAS’ various offices on Friday, 4th November, 2016. It is, therefore, important for every member of the Association- that is AFASites- to fully participate in the electioneering process, from the Presidential debate to the manifesto night and especially, the voting processes. There is a moral obligation on every AFASite to come exercise their franchise on the 4th November; it will make it easy for the electoral process to run smoothly and competitively. It will also make it pass the legitimacy test, and leaders who emerge through the process will have had majority of AFASites electing them. It is hoped that AFAS and AFASites have a hitch and rancor free passing of baton from Adeoye Adejare and his team to the new leaders that will championed under the auspices of all AFASites.