Dues - Pope Jay
Due to the jealous nature of my faculty, one of the few chances of adventure I get is my daily ride to and from campus. I reside in an area near the school gate and therefore have to board the popular “Town Gboro” buses to get to campus. Most times, my adventures are quite simple and dull but on some other occasions, an incident or the other helps lighten up my boring adventure: Fights and quarrels over fares at bus stops, the sonorous “enter with your change” song the drivers sing, and others are some examples of these incidents. Last week, I got to experience another form of entertainment in the course of my boring adventure.
On my way back to town, I boarded a bus with some law students (who are always not so hard to recognize) and from the bus stop to the campus gate, they kept on lamenting and arguing. The topic of their very loud discussion was a very interesting one: From their arguments, I could infer that they were 400 level students and had a test the next day. But it seemed that the lecturer handling the course had made it a criterion that they paid their Law Students Societal dues before they could write the test. As expected the students were not quite in agreement with the criterion, in fact throughout the journey they continued to decry the act, regarding it as “extortion” and in fact, at a point, they began to sound like human rights activists. I was also able to learn from their talks that the due was five hundred naira. One of the bases of their refusal to pay the dues was that past administrations had not done anything with the dues they had paid in times past. This was not the first time I was hearing these kinds of talk. In fact, I had heard them times without number from different students from different departments but at that point, I realized the resultant effect.
I belong to the Pharmaceutical Association of Nigerian Students (PANS), OAU and one of the plenty arguments I have had as a member of the association is that your dues do not make you a PANSite, Admission and Matriculation does. It is then your obligation as a member of PANS to pay your membership dues. I believe this applies in most association within and even beyond OAU. For instance, your qualifications get you a job but it is the your moral and civic duty as a worker of the state to pay your tax.
However, due to the level of corruption, incompetency and even the economical degradation in society today, majority do not feel obliged to fulfill their financial responsibility. A friend of mine in a very populous department in the faculty of arts narrated to me how the executives in his department embezzled association funds and I was scared for tomorrow. However, we cannot decide to behead the man in a bid to cure his headache. Rather than decide to punish the present for the mistakes of the past, we should continue to hope that today would lead to a better tomorrow because when the eyes refuse to see, the whole body is blind and when the legs refuse to walk, the whole body is immobile. As a member of an association, society etc. we are part of a body and the body needs us to do our part.
To the executives whose manifestoes are delayed because of the refusal of members to pay dues, please chill; Aregbe no pay salary! To the executives whose members paid dues and their money was miraculously no longer visible, I hope ‘Amadioha’s’ son is in your association! To the members who think their executives might be doing something shady, CONGRESS! CONGRESS!! CONGRESS!!! And lastly to the members, who have not paid their dues because they have lost that obligation, please pay your due. It helps you in the raising of your shoulders when contributing to matters concerning the association, I think some people call it Pride.