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ASUU insists strike not political


[FILE PHOTO] ASUU National President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has dismissed insinuations that its ongoing strike was politically motivated.

ASUU Chairman at the University of Ibadan, Dr. Deji Omole, disclosed this to newsmen after its congress.

He said its members would not allow the ruling elite to destroy the heritage of the poor, which is qualitative public varsity education.

He also declared that the strike would continue until the Federal Government resolves all the issues in contention.

According to him, the first meeting with the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr. Chris Ngige, did not address the substantive issues that led to the strike.

ASUU had declared total, indefinite and comprehensive strike over the failure of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to fulfill the content of the Memorandum of Action it signed with it in 2017.

The agreement bothers on revatilisation and funding of universities, unpaid accumulated academic earned allowances, and the release of university staff pension company license among other issues.

Omole explained that the union is rejecting Dr. Wale Babalakin, who is the leader of Federal Government team, because he is an interested party who is pursuing a private university license and will do everything to jeopardize public education funding.

The chairman stressed that a situation whereby two members in the team are pursuing their private university licenses, indicate that they will not favour the funding of public education.

“How can our strike be political when there are matters that you, as a government signed and failed to fulfill the promises? To us, it is the Federal Government that is being political with the truth by becoming untrustworthy.

“How can the president and his vice be asking Nigerian universities to become part of the leading universities in the world without making the same commitments that responsive and responsible governments in the world are making to education?”

He expressed concern that the leadership has shown consistent disrespect for agreements; hence ASUU can no longer trust it.

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