News: Iyayi’s family refutes N50b demand from Kogi Gov as group begs ASUU to call off strike
By SIMON EBEGBULEM
BENIN CITY – THE family of the late former President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof. Festus Iyayi, yesterday, disassociated themselves from the N50billion demand from the Kogi State government over the death of their son, saying that no amount of money can compensate for the loss.
Meanwhile the Coalition to Save Nigeria (CSN) has appealed to the striking ASUU members to call off the strike action as a mark of respect for Prof.Iyayi.
It would be recalled that the Onojie of Ugbegun, home town of late Prof Iyayi, had demanded the sum of N50bilion as compensation for the death of their son.
TEARS FOR IYAYI—Relations and sympathisers console Mrs Grace Iyayi (4th L), widow of former president of ASUU, Late Prof. Festus Iyayi at Ekosodin in Benin City. Photo: Barnabas Uzosike.
However, Prof. Robert Ebewale, a cousin to the deceased, told Vanguard yesterday that it was embarrassing to try to equate the life of Prof Iyayi with money, saying that the family was embarrassed with N50billion demand.
“No amount of money can be compared with the life of that calibre of person, so we want to disassociate our family with that. It is embarrassing to us,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Coalition to Save Nigeria (CSN) received with shock the death of Prof. Iyayi, Prof. Iyayi was an accomplished academic, author and unionist and a detribalized Nigerian who gave voice to the voiceless and defended the defenceless against arbitrariness and impunity by our public officers.
“With his death, the Nigerian revolutionary movement has been decapitated as Prof. Iyayi was one of the movement’s brain boxes in the struggle for a better Nigeria where equity, fairness and justice will reign. We have lost a committed comrade and an icon of the struggle for an egalitarian Nigeria. He was a true and authentic comrade who devoted his entire life to the struggle and died fighting for educational justice for the present and future generations of Nigerian students,” it stated.
The statement added: “We call on ASUU and the federal government to speedily resolve the remaining grey areas in their disagreement to enable the suspension of the current ASUU strike as a mark of respect to Prof. Iyayi”.