Reactions has continued to trail the recent comprehensive, total and indefinite strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Some stakeholders on Tuesday said that the recent announcement by ASUU on the indefinite strike was disheartening and a disaster to the education sector.

A Parent, who preferred anonymity expressed worry over the latest development, while calling on the Federal Government to dialogue with the union so that students would return to school.

“The roll over strike by ASUU potent disaster for Nigeria education, it’s a kind of nailing the coffin of education in Nigeria which is very sad.

” I think response to ASUU has been very lukewarm from the government side it’s like government is not keen to tertiary education anymore.

” If they are not, then they should reform the system to give it a new funding mechanism.

” If tertiary education is run smoothly in in Ghana, Liberia, Gambia and much poorer African countries, what is the problems here?,” he said.

He, therefore, appealed to the Federal Government to learn from these countries on ways to fund tertiary education in the country.

He also advised students not to loose focus but enroll in skills that would better their lives rather than getting involved in criminal activities that could destroy their lives

” I will rather advise students to learn new skills this period and in six months the could become a data analyst, working online and earning income for themselves.

” If parents are prepared to send their children to school, they should also be prepared to send their children to learn new skills and not just sitting at home because you don’t know how long this strike will take,” he said.

Also, a Concerned Nigerian, Mr Kanayo Umeh, said the country would not develop more than the standard of its education, hence the need to take tertiary education more serious.

Umeh said that the way forward to solving the problems was for government to have a honest conversation with the union.

According to him, ASUU president had said that the union was ready to bring up concrete resolutions to the table if government was ready to play its card.

” The government must therefore shift ground based on the recent realities and not make promises they cannot keep to.

” This strike actions has affected a lot of Nigerian students especially Post Graduate Students who wants to obtain their transcript for further studies,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Save Public Education Campaign, a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) said that ASUU was forced to declare indefinite strike.

The Co-coordinator of the organisation, Mrs Vivian Bello said that the organisation would continue to defend the 1999 constitution to guarantee the freedom of association.

Bello called on government to meet ASUU demands without further delay or would mobilise Nigerians for a three-day mass protest in favour of ASUU.

According to her, to us we find it complete ridiculous that despite huge amount of money the government has lost to corruption, the federal government couldn’t deem it important to meet ASUU demands.

” Under the 1999 Constitution, to ban ASUU, means that the Federal Government will attack the Chapter 4 of the constitution that guaranty freedom of association and assembly.

“This also means that the government will withdraw its ratification of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights and the Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to organise Convention No 87of the International Labour Organisation.

“It portends danger to the Nigeria civil space because “In international law, ILO Conventions 87 and 98 recognise the right to recognise union and collective bargaining.

” Federal Government must immediately meet the agreements signed with ASUU. We call for unity of Nigerian students, workers and civil society groups to mobilise support for ASUU until their demands are made,” he said.

She also said that the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) had led two days mass protests to force government to demand of ASUU so that student would resume.

She called on the NLC and Trade Union Congress (TUC) to unite at this period to mobilise towards the three days general strike as they have promised.

It would be recalled that ASUU had declared an indefinite strike on Aug. 29 after fruitless negotiation with the government.

ASUU President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke had observed with regret that the union had experienced a lot of deceit at the highest level in the last five and half years, saying the federal government engaged ASUU in fruitless and unending negotiation without a display of utmost fidelity.

Nigeria’s public universities have been on strike since February 14 as ASUU declared one month warning strike over unresolved issues with the federal government.

A month after the lecturers withdrew their services, the non-teaching staff also commenced their own strike over some demands they claimed the government was unable to attend to.

The three non-teaching staff unions in the university that downed tools are the Senior Staff Union of Universities (SSANU), the Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions (NASU) and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT).

While the three non-teaching staff unions have suspended their own strike after the government made some offers to them, ASUU has extended its own strike.

Some of the contentious issues that led to the strike by the unions includes the non-release of revitalisation fund, non-payment of earned allowance (or earned academic allowance), renegotiation of the 2009 Agreement, and the release of white paper for visitation panel.

Others are the non-payment of minimum wage arrears and the inconsistency occasioned by the use of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).

By Editor

Leave a Reply

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