What’s In A Name? From University of Lagos to Moshood Abiola University
Following reports of angry student demonstrations in Nigeria’s main city of Lagos, one cannot help but wonder what actually is in a name? Afterall, renaming a prestigious university should not actually affect its ranking as lecturers, infrastructure and other amenities remain unchanged. However, while the president’s intentions are good, the demonstrations have proved that many still disagree.
Those who did not envisage such protests would wonder why anyone would disagree with marking Nigeria’s 13th year return to democracy with Moshood Abiola’s “martyrdom”. Afterall, Abiola is seen by many as a hero who helped usher Nigeria into its current status as a democratic nation. However, students have reportedly wondered why there where not consulted before the university – popularly known as Unilag – was renamed to Moshood Abiola University. This feeling is summed up by one protester who was quoted as saying “the name is our pride”. It remains to be seen whether the protest or indeed the suspension of academic activities for two weeks will change the minds of the powers that be.