University campuses across Nigeria have overtime become the breeding ground for student politics which is often characterized by unmonitored and unchecked budgeting and spending across all levels.
This has led to many unnoticed but few revealing cases of corruption, mismanagement of student dues/funds and embezzlement.
Not only are students denied access to social service projects that could enhance their mental health, psychological, social and physical wellbeing, a culture of value decadence is cultivated.
Evidently, many of these corrupt student leaders form the base for the elite corrupt politicians that vie for and end up in public offices.
It is in the vein that the 2019/2020 administration led by president of the student union government Bayero university, Comr. Sai’d Garba took a step towards student-led open governance On Saturday 29th of febuary, 2020 by inviting students of the university to its first town hall meeting where the proposed capital budget of Student union was deliberated and open to decisions from the students.
Present were student organizations, Faith based organization and the Nigerian Students accountability Network, a network of students committed to holding leaders in public service accountable for their actions and curbing corrupt practices.
The student leader of the network, Olumide Areo was present to report first of its organized tall hall meeting in the school.
The capital budget proposed the renovation of the basketball court, A volley Ball Court and the student market at old site and others.
The students were adverse to these projects as many who commented requested that the Student Union Executive to consider a project targeted at solving the challenge of Malaria on their campus.
This is caused by breeding mosquitos facilitated by the nature of the hostels toilets, particularly Nana hostel at old site.
They expressed their plights and ill circumstances they go through while using the gent, seeking their basic rights to be properly represented by the SUG. Another student observer mentioned there should be sensitization to students on the use of the toilets.
A brief interview with the president, Said Garba Sadi said “am embracing transparency in my tenure, I got calls from my other colleagues against public announcement of our capital and recurrent budget.
This is a privilege for the students to have access to our financial plans”. Just when all was in due cause, an argument ensued with the chairman of Zero Tolerance for Corruption Club, BUK chapter.
Who confronted the executives of the student union for inappropriate actions during the town hall meeting demanding it is the rights of students to be part of the Governance system not a privilege to the governed as proposed by the president of the SUG.
Conclusively, it is evident that there is yet more to be done in respect to advocacy and awareness of students on knowledge of their rights to freedom of information as present in the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).