ASUU begins indefinate strike on the 5th of Nov, 2018
The Academic Staff Union Of Universities (ASUU) has commenced an indefinite strike.
An official of the union, Ben Ugwoke from the University of Abuja, confirmed the development to PREMIUM TIMES Sunday night.
Specifically, the union accused the government of not implementing the Memorandum of Action signed with it, declaring that the asuu strike would be total as all federal and state varsities would join the strike.
The union made the announcement after their National Executive Council meeting held at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State on Sunday night.
Briefing journalists after the NEC meeting, the National President of the ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi said all entreaties made to the Federal Government to honour the agreement with the union fell on deaf ears and they had no other alternative but to begin the strike action.
He said, “Having waited patiently for action and meaningful negotiation with reasonable men using the principle of collective bargaining that ASUU at its NEC meeting of 3rd and 4th November 2018 at the FUTA, resolved to resume the nationwide strike action it suspended in September 2017 with immediate effect.
The strike is to protest the poor funding of Nigerian universities and alleged plan by the federal government to increase students fees and introduce an education bank.
Led by its National President, Biodun Ogunyemi, ASUU declared the strike at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting late on Sunday.
Weeks before the strike was announced, Mr Ogunyemi explained in an interview with PREMIUM TIMES why the lecturers were opposed to an education bank.
“The Nigerian government experimented with it for 7-8 years; it failed.
“So government had to set up a ministerial committee at the federal executive council to go and wind up the national education banking plan in 2001/2002, something they started in 1993.
So for seven to eight years, the experiment failed. Why did it fail? Government was not living up to its financial obligations towards the bank. There was widespread corruption, capacity of students to pay back the loan was not there, because there were no jobs and there are still no jobs.
“So you can imagine what will become of a bank that the loan equipment is not coming or is very low, the rate of payment is low or not coming.
Asuu told them all of these but they went ahead to come up with the idea that well, we have calculated the cost of what we need to train an undergraduate and they have estimated that it will be N1 million that they will borrow from the bank.
We smelt a rat. Why? Why are you insisting that students who do not have the capacity to pay should borrow and that this time around the money will not be given to them will be paid directly to universities irrespective of whether private or public,” the don said