The New Dispensation Tenure: A Review of the Office of the Treasurer

The previous cabinet of executives saw the birth of a new UIMSA, one where a woman could be the President of one of the largest student associations in Nigeria. The mostly-female executive cabinet promised a number of things. They were voted in because UIMSAites believed the promises they made were what UIMSA needed. Their watch has come to an end, but just before we let them go, it is pertinent to evaluate whether they delivered on these promises. This article will focus on the service of Miss Esther Olaoye, who served as the Treasurer of UIMSA for the past eleven (11) months.

The office of the Treasurer of the University of Ibadan Medical Students’ Association is tasked with duties that include being responsible to the Executive Committee for the disbursement of the approved expenditure of the Association and keeping records and custody of all receipts of withdrawals, payments and statutory books of accounts as may be directed by the auditors of the Association amongst others as listed in chapter 3, article IX of the newly revised UIMSA Constitution. Miss Olaoye’s manifesto included a list of her constitutional duties and a promise to ‘build’ on the work of her predecessors.

Miss Olaoye fulfilled her constitutional duties. The change of signatory to the account was made within a week of the tenure and this enabled access to the funds needed for the running of the Association. The proposed budget for the tenure was also made accessible to all interested UIMSAites on the 21st of May, 2022. The audited accounts of the finances of the Association presented to the senate by the Treasurer were accepted quarterly.

The highlight of Miss Olaoye’s manifesto that drew UIMSAites to vote for her comprised innovative plans for the association. These plans include:

1. Refurbish the ‘Clinical Pack’ to ‘UIMSA Medipack’ to include sales of materials like dissecting sets, eye goggles, hand gloves, etc., to the Preclinical arm of the Association while still maintaining sales of materials to clinical students.

2. Work with the General Secretary and the Financial Secretary to utilize certain merchandise for money-making purposes e.g. renting out the UIMSA bus, use of the printer, photocopier & laminator at the Secretariat in the College building for business purposes.

3. Create a multi-pronged approach to increase the payment of dues.
● Creating an incentive system for the first fifty (50) UIMSAites to pay their dues. This would serve to appreciate UIMSAites and also encourage other UIMSAites to pay their dues.
● Liaising with the office of the Public Relations Officer to create an aggressive media campaign for UIMSAites, reminding and encouraging them to pay the Association dues.
● Working with the Executive Council, Senate, and Congress to mandate UIMSAites who will serve in committees to pay their dues.

The UIMSA Medipack.
The Association has students on two campuses: the UI campus for the preclinical and preliminary students and the UCH campus for the Clinical students. Hence, aspiring candidates for executive positions always try to bridge the gaps that exist between both campuses. Miss Olaoye would have achieved this by catering to UIMSAites on the UI campus, helping ease the transition of preliminary students into the preclinical school. In truth, it was a brilliant idea, but there was no implementation. This was confirmed by the preclinical students spoken to by the UIMSA Press, as they claimed not to have received UIMSA Medipack. The package continues to exist for clinical students. This does not in any way suggest that students on the UI campus are secondary members of the Association.

Making more money for the Association.

The treasurer promised in her manifesto that certain merchandise was going to be utilized for
money-making purposes. Based on research made by the UIMSA Press, it was discovered that this plan was not implemented. Upon further perusal of the audited accounts presented to the Senate, it was noted that there was no recorded income from renting the merchandise out. This plan, if carried out, would have raised more money for the Association.

Increased Payment of Dues.
Every association needs funds to function properly. A part of the funds used to run UIMSA is gotten from the dues. The amount levied on fresh UIMSAites, the first years, is N3000 while the amount levied on other students in the Association is N3000. A typical Medicine and Surgery class contains more than 100 students. It is safe to estimate that at least 80% of the population ought to pay their dues. The proposed approach to encourage more UIMSaites to pay their dues was multi-pronged. She liaised with the Public Relations Officer and consistently released fliers to remind UIMSAites to pay their dues. There were also visits to certain classes to remind them of the importance of paying their dues. It was noted by several UIMSAites that they had to provide their receipt of payment of dues before they were allowed to serve in any committee of their choice; this has overall contributed to members paying their dues earlier than they normally would. A promise not kept was the incentive to the first 50 UIMSAites to pay their dues. A quick survey among UIMSAites revealed that neither did they have access to this incentive nor had they heard of a fellow UIMSAite who had access to the incentive. Perhaps, giving out these incentives early on in the tenure would have encouraged more people to pay up their dues. We will never know because it wasn’t implemented.

Innovation and Challenges
According to Miss Olaoye, she was faced with a challenge regarding the withdrawal of money from the association’s bank account, like other executives. She states in her Account of Stewardship that there were requests from the office that disrupted her school activities. These requests include cashing out money for the use of the association during her school hours. She surpassed this challenge by creating a new approach to accessing the money in the Association’s account. This was made possible by activating the bank application for transactions. It is also important to note that this stands out as the innovation she made during her time in the office as noted in her account of Stewardship.

The Flutterwave website was also noted to have malfunctioned a couple of times, and this led her to issue physical receipts to UIMSAites as against the e-receipts that were the norm. The office of the Treasurer can make available other payment options so that the association is not limited to just Flutterwave and in situations where Flutterwave fails, the alternative payment option can be used.

Miss Olaoye was open to fresh and innovative ideas in her manifesto. When she stepped into the office of the treasurer, she focused on the constitutional duties that are expected of every treasurer. She was also noted to have made contributions on the executive council and on the Senate floor.

Finally, it is important to hear from UIMSAites who worked with Miss Olaoye during her tenure. According to her colleagues, Miss Olaoye was an excellent leader who fostered collaboration and teamwork. Also, a senator from the 2k24 class who has witnessed two executive tenures says if he had to rate the treasurer’s performance, he would give her seven out of ten.

Below are the interviews with esteemed UIMSAites.

Interviewer: You served with the treasurer, Miss Olaoye Esther Temiloluwa, on the Senate floor. What was it like working with her and describe her contributions on the floor?

Anonymous 1: I served with her on the Senate floor but I haven’t worked with her one on one. I think she did okay with the work assigned to her.

I: In her manifesto, she added that she would rebrand the clinical pack into the UIMSA pack and ensure that it contains resources that preclinical students might find useful. I understand that you’re a preclinical student, did you have access to this UIMSA pack?

O: I actually cannot recall seeing or accessing any UIMSA pack at any point. I doubt anything of the sort was created. But we’ll be receiving our UIMSA package this week.

I: One of the duties of the treasurer is to ensure that payment of UIMSA dues is seamless for UIMSAites, will you regard the process during this tenure as seamless?

O: I think many people had issues with the website for payment. It was semi-seamless.

Below is the interview with an anonymous source.

Interviewer: Good evening. I am from the UIMSA Press. Could you please introduce yourself?
Anonymous 2: Good evening. I am a member of the 200-level class.
I: how many executive tenures have you witnessed, ma?
N: I have witnessed 2 executive tenures.
I: What, in your opinion, has been peculiar about the recently concluded tenure?
N: The dual meetings we had. (online and physical) It has actually been quite the hassle.
I: Did you serve with the treasurer in any office or committee?
N: Yes. I served with her in Congress.
I: How will you describe working with her?
N: She was efficient enough, to me, that is. She was there when a meeting was scheduled and I can say she did okay.
I: One of the duties of the treasurer is to ensure that the payment of UIMSA dues is seamless for UIMSAites will you regard the process during this tenure as seamless?
N: Seamless? No. There were times when executives persuaded us to pay our dues and there were BCs, etc. True, everyone’s hand is not equal but due to the whole UIMSA due thing, some things were delayed.
I: the treasurer promised during her campaign to refurbish the UIMSA clinical pack into the UIMSA “medipack” to include preclinical students. Did you at any time have access to this UIMSA “medipack” as a preclinical student?
N: No, I did not have access to any pack like this.
I: Also, did you receive or hear about anyone receiving an incentive for being one of the first 50 UIMSAites to pay their dues?
N: No, I did not.
I: On a scale of 1-10, how will you rate the treasurer’s performance?
N: I’ll go with a 6.
I: thank you so much for all your time.

Afeezah Wojuade

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *