ASUU strike: The fate of federal universities’ students
Sir: Many years back, a treacherous threat on educational sector began. Without doubt, it has become very adamant and constant norm that in a year, Nigerian universities across the four angles of the country shall witnessed a delay which is called strike. Strike has been a designed phenomenon and policy by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to fight back the Federal Government or shows their grievances whenever their said and acclaimed demands were not attended to by the government.
According to some sources, the strike action embarked on by ASUU has been more than two decades in Nigeria. Amidst the cold weather of strike, Nigerian University student’s loss and it is indeed a great loss. As the grass suffers when two elephants are fighting so does the students suffer the strike phenomenon between the two institutions lock horns. Students who are supposed to acquire qualitative and quantitative knowledge within a given period will be denied the grace as ASUU’s strike would have hindered their academic calendars and make them spend, sometimes, more months or years on campus. We had witnessed that in the past. Their aim and objective at later on, will not be gained within the space of prescribed years and because of this, the fate, future and destiny of so many Nigerian students will be delayed against their -student- schedule of life.
In reference to ASUU’s claim which is why our universities are on strike, there are no infrastructures to acquire basic knowledge in Nigerian universities. And the Federal Government that’s constitutionally responsible to provide these infrastructures turned deaf ears to their requests despite several submitted memos. Ask any member of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), why the strike action today, and his or her answers will revolve around the Federal Government’s failure to provide environment (infrastructures) through which qualitative and quantitative can be achieved in our public universities.
Recently, ASUU Chairman, Prof. Ogunyemi, advised Federal Government on school reopening. He said our schools should remain closed till it’s safe for our students. In furtherance, he assured that universities across the nation, even after resumption, may not be reopened due to the outstanding crisis between the union and the Federal Government. In short, federal universities students are not resuming post-COVID-19. Over the years, the Federal Governments have been making promises with the union. And since administration is transient, no administration has fulfilled the promises it made with the union.
ASUU will however continue to call the Federal Government to its promises since that is the only language it understands. And to understand, the issue of strike has been among the factors contributing to the relegation and devaluation of our educational system. Not only on our education as some of our youth who have proclivity for vicious acts such as thuggery, robbery, prostitution inter alia seize that opportunity to engage in these acts as it is often said that ‘’an idle hand is a devil workshop’’
No doubt, if this strike continues, the future of this country will be at stake. As a victim of ASUU strike, I would like to suggest the same everlasting solution raised by the representative of Kaba/Bunu/ijumu Federal Constituency, Honourable Tajudeen Yusuf, where he opined that, there should be a parliamentary intervention on the issue of strike between the Federal Government and ASUU by having a public documental agreement which will serve as an evidence anytime the case may arise. So that aftermath, the masses can recognize the culprit among the both. If the MEMO which used to take place between the delegations of Federal Government and ASUU only continues without any legal or legislative hand, the menace of embarking on strike will continue as a dreadful disease to the development of our educational system.
Abdulganiyu Abdulrahman Akanbi wrote from Sokoto.