Ahead of the forthcoming general election, the National Association of Kaduna State Students has denied endorsing the re-election bid of Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai.
The announcement was revealed in a statement jointly signed by its Secretary-General, Comrade Ahmed Usman and its Public Relations Officer, Comrade Reuben Musa.
“Information at our disposal indicate that there is a strong plot by the government in collaboration with some faction of imposters that are parading themselves as officials of our noble Union. We are aware that these imposters have received a huge amount of money for the endorsement of the re-election bid of the incumbent in Kaduna.
“We will NOT sit back and watch this kangaroo endorsement to damage the image of the Union. the student Union body is apolitical, and even where such a decision was to happen only a legitimate Congress shall convene to decide,”.
The group maintained that as the constituted umbrella for all Kaduna State students saddled with the responsibilities of advocacy and engagements on students matters and affairs with members within Nigeria and the diaspora, the leaders would not allow the body to be dragged into partisan politics.
“As leaders of this noble Union, it is with great concern and of importance that we issue out a public statement on the plot to drag this pristine Body into partisan politics, contrary to the aims and objectives of the Union.
“NAKASS warned that the union will not tolerate the continuous muzzling by the government through it aides and members of the State Executive Council. Entrenching infractions and gross violation of the Constitution and throwing NAKASS into an unending crisis of legality and legitimacy of leadership.” It further alleged
“In an attempt to occupy the Institution, the government in Kaduna State have since supported a defacto leadership. the frantic attempt to enforce the name of the institution in a wasteful endorsement of an administration whose image has been laundered on the altar of bad governance, undemocratic culture, and misplaced priorities is a pointer to the key actors of the lingering unrest in NAKASS.
“There are cogent reasons why an endorsement as solicited by the incumbent administration in KADUNA State is cannot be granted in a hurry-if contemplated at all.
“The reasons will include the following:
“The administration of student scholarship scheme a legacy of past administrations in the state which had been a source of support to many students in time past in the state had been sabotaged by Gov. Nasir el-Rufai with no palliative whatsoever. This has led to a sharp under-development of the nation’s future human capital in the state and sent frustrated youths engaged in various forms of social vices.
“The monthly subvention that allowed for the smooth running of the Students body have in the past years of this administration been always diverted to strangle the organisation and keep it out of issues of governance on education and students welfare. We remember how with great difficulty the organisation laboured to evacuate students schooling in localities that had suffered banditry and other forms of violence with no significant contribution from the State government who had remained indifferent to the needs of the affected students.
“Under the incumbent administration, the Local Government funded Basic Education had come under serious setbacks bringing about a sharp shortfall in the required human capital to cater for school children many of whom are enjoying school facilities as a playground other than the education they RIGHTLY deserve.
“We cannot overlook the current bastardised Basic Education program which suffers under an overwhelming vested political interest that is evidently self-serving.
“We have observed the uncommon interest of the administration through choice hands to foster unconstitutionality and destroy the pristine value of NAKASS which had built the capacity of numerous aides that have served/still serve in the incumbent administration in the State.
“We have seen consistently how an administration that has failed in taking the need assessments of students have diverted our Commonwealth in sponsoring political rallies/activities as witnessed in the recent KADUNA Music Festival 1.0 and 2.0.
“We have found no cogent reason as to how a Government will allow for the clustering of teachable school-aged youth to be preoccupied with the unproductive vigilante system with no remuneration and development for the youths.
“We consider all justifications given by the State Government as both lame and self-serving, especially with the elections just a few days away. We have real concerns as to the use of thugs in the guise of the ‘Civillian JTF’ being publicly courted by the incumbent administration in the forthcoming general elections.
“We hereby openly and collectively inform the general public to disregard any endorsement by a group of political party supporters parading themselves as the leadership of the prestigious National Association of Kaduna State Students as an act aimed at rubbishing the integrity of Kaduna State Students in a plot sponsored to promote an unpopular administration in Kaduna State.
“To this end, we call the attention of security officers to remain professional and unbiased by arrest this illegal plot. “The Constitution of NAKASS forbids strongly this act. NAKASS will not be a party to such illegalities. We are only interested in the politics of quality education, better welfare for students and peaceful and credible elections,” the statement read.