By Ogochukwu Isioma
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) chapter, has said that the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration is playing politics with the Nigerian university education system.
Chairman of the UNIMAID ASUU, Dr Abubakar Mshelia Saidu, stated this on Tuesday, while addressing journalists in Maiduguri. He spoke against the backdrop of the ongoing strike by university unions.
Saidu spoke during the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) national solidarity rally in support of ASUU held at the NLC secretariat in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
CAMPUS GIST reports that ASUU had commenced one-month warning strike on February 14, 2022, and extended it twice after the Federal Government failed to meet up with its demands.
Some of the demands of ASUU include: revitalisation of public universities, earned academic allowances (EAA) and the deployment of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) for payment of university lecturers.
Reacting, the UNIMAID ASUU chairman said the NLC is deeply concerned about the far-reaching negative consequences of the lingering crisis in universities and other tertiary institutions.
He added that the union frowns at the cheap blackmail of salary stoppage of the striking workers in the universities employed by the minister of labour and productivity, Dr. Chris Ngige.
Saidu commended the courage and resilience of members who have shown a strong sense of commitment predicated on principles, noting that it is important to remind members that collective dignity and the survival of the university system lie in members sustaining this strike to its logical conclusion.
“The government is playing politics with the university education in Nigeria. It is very unfortunate and that is exactly what they are doing. If government wants this problem to be resolved in a day or two days at most, it will be resolved. It is very clear.
“Negotiations has been done, renegotiated again over and over, it is just implementation that is the problem. Go and sign that document and implement it, that is just what ASUU is asking. We are not after any other thing apart from signing the document and implementing it. Nothing short of that,” Saidu said.