By Uche Amunike
The federal government has received a threat over the lingering Nigeria ASUU strike, from the Save Education Campaign group, Tuesday, for several factors which were listed by the organization.
Speaking to newsmen, Monday, the Convener of the group, Vivian Bello, decried the worrisome plight of students, ever since the Nigeria ASUU strike commenced.
While describing education as non-negotiable, she noted that the spate of insecurity in the country is easily a root cause of the failure of the education sector.
She listed factors like poor welfare, university autonomy and a lack of sufficient funding for these universities as some of the reasons why tertiary education has suffered a near-collapse in Nigeria.
She also acknowledged that the Nigeria ASUU strike has been ongoing for an entire 725 days since the onset of President Buhari’s administration, which was unacceptable as it did no good to the academic growth of the average Nigerian student.
Hear her: ‘This amounts to an entire two and half years’ loss in the educational lives of innocent Nigerian children/students in public universities.’
‘The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics and Colleges of Education, ASUP and COEASU are all also currently on strike on similar issues as ASUU.’
She further warned that the situation needed to be fixed urgently, otherwise, there would be an all-round collapse of tertiary education in the country.
The Save Education Campaign Group also called on the government to pay more attention to the issue on ground especially as they border on the industrial action by channeling more resources into seeing that the Nigerian ASUU strike is tackled once and for all.
The co-convener of the group, Dimeji Macaulay, on his part, noted that they were expectant of the outcome of the meeting between ASUU and the government before they declare a 14-day ultimatum.
He also averred that the reason for students engaging in criminal activities most times, is the constant number of strikes that take place in the school system, leaving them without much options than to be engaged negatively.
The federal government on their part has however stated that the meeting they have held so far with ASUU was to assess the progress that has been made on addressing the few and outstanding demands of the striking University workers, like contentious payment platform and renegotiation of their conditions of service.
Speaking, through a statement released by Head, Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, there has being several unfounded allegations and combative insinuations made by the ASUU, against the government, especially the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, adding that all insinuations that the Ministry of Labour was unsympathetic towards the students, unions and parents should be disabused, because the Minister is one.
It partly read: ‘ASUU should know that we are arbitrators and conciliators. We cannot manufacture agreements.
Regardless, we are not constrained from listening to the government side and pushing them to do their own bit as quickly as possible.’
It also faulted the ASUU President, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke for stating, during a Channels TV interview, that ASUU did not receive any invitation from the Federal government to attend a meeting held on June 23rd, 2022 at the presidential Villa Abuja.