Is Student Unionism A Necessary Evil? (explosive debate)


From Plato to Aristotle and from Obama to Buhari, oratory has been a powerful force for good in the history of the world: dictators have been toppled, tyrants have been deposed, policies have been established, elections have been won, and legends have been birthed.

Today, 4 debaters are about to write on the Sands of time with the power of words.

Welcome to the Spark!



The Topic for today’s debate is:

Student Unionism: A Necessary Evil?


To oppose the motion, I have Mr. Ayeni Femi

And to support the motion is Miss Dunmade Oluwatumininu


I can sense it.

The heat!

To begin round 1, Mr. Ayeni, please present your argument in 4mins.



Ayeni Femi:

All protocols duly observed



There are two fundamental questions to answer from this debate. First; is student unionism an evil? And the second, is student unionism a necessary evil? My answers to the above questions are in the negative. Student unionism itself is no evil and being a necessary evil, it cannot be.


When the purpose of a thing is unknown, its abuse is inevitable. The blunt truth here is that student unionism is a good tool in the hands of student to check and balance the excesses of the institutional management. However, occurrence have proven that the leadership of student unionism fails to major on the primary, rather uses the situation for personal interest. We have heard instances whereby some contest for offices because of the privileges attached to it like the private office and the singular room accommodation.


Research has revealed, that most student union leaders play on the intelligence of other students by hiding under the auspices of fighting for the welfare of students, while in reality, they are being used as political instruments to disrupt the administration of the school, there are political god fathers somewhere playing the viper and dictating its tune. Leading to unending and prolonged academic sessions unnecessarily.


It does not end there. When student union protests erupt, we often find some humans leading these protests not to be registered students. All they do is hide under the umbrella of student unionism and work out their evil.

In most Nigerian universities today, because of the reality and facts on ground, student unionism has been tantamount to cultism. Many cult members hide under student unionism like some youths who are engaging in money rituals hide under the tag ‘Yahoo! Yahoo!’.


The wholesome truth is this; student unionism is good, but when such a good platform has been seemingly interpreted to be evil, then of a fact, it cannot be a necessary evil. We cannot put something on nothing and expect it to stand. It will definitely crumble like a pack of badly arranged cards. Student unionism is not a necessary evil.





Miss Dunmade please your argument


Dunmade Oluwatumininu:

All protocols duly observed.

I support the motion; student unionism: necessary evil? Student union is ‘an organization that aids social organizational activities, representation and academic support’ according to Wikipedia.

Student unionism according to me is basically the back bone of all students in an institution

Student unionism acts as a medium between school authorities and students. They stand to solve the problems that are faced by students in school.


They fight the authority for fulfillment of student needs, otherwise, the management will have a strong power to make huge corruption and mismanage school resources.

Skeptics would say student unionism results in violence. This is expected wen one realizes the amount of energy contained in youths. They also organize cultural and recreational activities, therefore they are an indispensable part of any educational institution. It’s very unrealistic to say that school heads will always be right in their approach. They are at times orthodox in their way and when they impose certain rules without caring for students, at this time student unionism comes in.


Some will say student unionism is pure politics I say to them by quoting a famous person ‘doz wu refuse to participate in politics are destined to be ruled by deir inferiors’-Plato.

Tank u.




Interesting topic

Even neither of the debaters are ready to give in…

Let’s go there.

Round 2

The final clash


2 minutes to study your opponent’s presentation. Let the final battle begin.


Mr. Ayeni, please.



Ayeni Femi:

Greetings, once again. To define according to Wikipedia is a bad reference though I did not define because the terms are not ambiguous.

The debate topic is: student unionism; a necessary evil, it is not about whether or not student unionism is good or bad. Like I stated, student unionism is good but not a necessary evil.


For a fact, it is not necessary. Also, the debate is not about politics and been a student union activist does not make you political and vice versa.


Moderator: You have the time to clash for the next 6 minutes.


Ayeni Femi: Politics and unionism are not same…


Moderator: I hope Miss Dunmade isn’t giving up.


Ayeni Femi: The issue at hand, is what makes student unionism seemingly evil. For a fact it is not evil. It is the power,  the voice of the students when used properly.


Finally, when the purpose of a thing ceases the thing ceases in its entirety.
Thank you.


 Moderator: I understand Miss Dunmade is cooking up her attack… hmmm


Dunmade Oluwatumininu:

‘Unending prolonged academic sessions’ you say? Are you trying to say the ‘power’ behind student Unionism prolongs academic sessions? There are good student unionists and there are the ‘other ones’. The strive of fighting injustice and misappropriation of funds by the authorities cannot go to waste just like that. The good unionists have to see and know they are making progress, even if it means ‘unending academic sessions’. It eventually pays off in the long run.


Moderator: How will this end? Difficult to determine.

A round of applause for our debaters please… they really battled

Judges please.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Mr. Richard, kindly start this time…


Dr. Richard Spark: Pheew!

Thank you so much Sir…

Once again we have had another hot session of debate, more interestingly a man vs a lady.


In making your argument Mr. Ayeni, as a keen observer I do not know what motion you moved because you did not state it. Kindly explain why.


Ayeni Femi: I stated it in the first paragraph. I answered both questions in the debate in d negative

First, if it is an evil.

Second, if it is a necessary evil.

And my concluding statement affirms it.


Dr. Richard Spark: Thank you Sir. I could infer from your train of thoughts where you stand.


Ayeni Femi: Alright sir


Dr. Richard Spark: Uhm… Over to you Sir, Mr. Ogunbowale.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Mr. Richard, you have no questions for her?


Dr. Richard Spark: Oh oh yes, I do. Pardon me


Miss Tumi… You sure have the will and spirit of a good debater.

You stated many of the functions of Student Union and what could have happened if we had no unions but I expected you to give ample examples or evidences to prove your point as I believe you are a student. Please,  share your thoughts on this. Thank you.


Dunmade Oluwatumininu:

Hmmm yeah right, I was about giving an example but I didn’t wantew say anything detrimental to d institution I wanted to use as an example bcuz I hadn’t fully made my findings.


Dr. Richard Spark: Alright ma’am. Thank you. That will be all from my own end. Over to Mr. Ogunbowale.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Mr Femi Ayeni, you used words like ‘research has revealed’,  ‘occurrence has proven’

Kindly tell us who conducted the research, where and when?

Where did ‘occurrence prove’ and what was proven?

Thank you.




Moderator: Hmmmm. Constructive.


Ayeni Femi: By research I mean d broad umbrella of research and findings, like administration of questionnaire by final year students, one on one interviews and personal findings. All these are research.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Can you share one of such findings?

Give us names. Surely, projects have topics, researchers and findings. We are all here to learn.


Ayeni Femi: Occurrences like those we experience in OAU, UI & LAUTECH.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Give us names.


Ayeni Femi: That will be all, sir.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: OK, you forgot to mention the schools before. I see.

You have managed to mention 3 universities in defense of ‘occurrence’. How about research?


Ayeni Femi: Research conducted by final year students in OAU. No names.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Interesting.


I have a single question for Miss Tummy.

You used spellings like:







Can you tell us why?


Dunmade Oluwatumininu:

Hmmm. About that, I wasn’t with my glasses. Though it’s inexcusable. Sorry.


Ogunbowale Olugbenga: Your glasses? Hmm, I see.

That will be all from me. Over to the moderator.



We had a very interesting session today despite the constraints we had.

A round of applause once again for the four debaters

Thank you all for participating and also to the officials, thank you.

Now to the results:


Dr. Richard Spark:

The debate was a great success. Thanks to the valuable contribution from all quarters – the Moderator, Judges, Excellent debaters and The Spark team.

Welcome once again to this forum.


The much anticipated results have been collated by our impartial judges who above all else desire excellence and want to rekindle the fiery passion for development in our dear country. Debate is and will continue to be an excellent outlet in achieving this.

Now, the results shortly.


First the results as compiled by Mr. Richard:



Content: 3

Logic: 3.5

Creativity: 3.5

Entertainment: 3

Cross Examination: 2




Content: 2.5

Logic: 3.0

Creativity: 2.0

Entertainment: 2

Cross Examination : 1

TOTAL 10.5




Finally the results as compiled by Mr. Ogunbowale Olugbenga:



Content: 3.5

Logic: 3

Creativity: 2.5

Entertainment: 2

Cross examination: 0.5

Total: 11





Content: 2.5

Logic: 3

Creativity: 1.5

Entertainment: 1.5

Cross examination: 0

Total: 8.5


After collating the two independent assessments, we arrived at:

Ayeni Femi: 26

Dunmade Oluwatumininu: 19


Ayeni Femi Wins!


Congratulations to all the winners

And to the others, you fought well. We are proud of you and you should be proud of yourselves.

Alright, wonderful people!


Published by Ogunbowale Olugbenga

Ogunbowale Olugbenga is a multiple award winning social entrepreneur & digital skills expert. An alumnus of the Leadership in Business Institute of Kellogg School of Management (USA), He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Obafemi Awolowo University (Nigeria). Inspired by the plight of millions of unemployed youths, Olugbenga founded, a digital agency passionately growing businesses & accelerating the application of digital skills for economic prosperity across Africa. To help institutions prevent scandals & promote performance, Gbenga founded Polivoice.Work, an anonymous employee feedback tool that captures & analyses feedback anonymously in real time to detect, predict & improve work place conditions. A Mandela Washington Fellow, Tony Elumelu Fellow, Royal Common wealth society fellow, YALI star of business & YALI network influencer, Olugbenga is the founder of Africa’s biggest orphanage outreach, The Orphan Empowerment Society, with a 5,000 strong volunteer force and a presence in 19 African countries empowering thousands of orphans with free vocational skills, medical care, & food. He is also the co-founder of the communication & leadership organization, Pacesetters Leadership Club.

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