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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have alleged that the Federal Government is making moves that would compel its members to embark on another strike that will leave students stranded.
The union also urged Student Union Government (SUG) in universities to support its efforts to avoid another industrial action.
Speaking in Port Harcourt on Friday, the Zonal Coordinator, ASUU, Stanley Ogoun, insisted that the union was not ready to be pushed into another strike.
He said ASUU’s consistent demand was to improve the standard of universities, lamenting that the government was only interested in proliferation of universities without adequately funding them.
Read Also: Strike: ASUU Clears Air On Current Position
According to him: ‘The Academic Staff Union of Universities is calling on all students, parents and well-meaning Nigerians to prevail on government at both the Federal and state levels that our union is rejecting their directive for us to proceed on strike, for now.
‘Fellow masses, please ask the government to prove us wrong, that strike is not the only language they understand.
‘Why compel us to disrupt academic activities again on our campuses, when we are yet to recover from the covid-19 assault?
‘By deliberately rejecting and frustrating all overtures for peace, the government has spoken unequivocally that strike is the only language they understand.
‘Our union is painfully resisting all attempts by the government to compel us to proceed on strike on strike so as to blackmail our union as they do with all labour unions in the country.’
Ogoun pointed out that the union should not be the ones crying and consistently fighting for government to do the right thing, adding that it should be a collective effort to save the falling standard of education in the country.
He said: ‘You are aware that resident doctors are on strike due to governments preference for disruptive behaviour. Our courts were closed for a long time for the same reason.
‘They have now asked us to join the queue. By subscribing to disruptive behaviour, government has affirmed to Nigerians its preferred national behavioural model.
‘The average Nigerian is no longer in doubt of the fact that being civil is a recipe for total abandonment in this nation. As a union of intellectuals, we are amazed at the national preference for disruptive conduct as opposed to civility.
‘All over the world, responsibility of government is to plan and prioritise national goals. In pursuit of these goals all critical assets for development are identified, harnessed and deployed by responsible government for attainment of goals.
‘Please what are our national goals? permit us to ask if technological growth and its multiplier effect on social- economic development is one of our national aspirations’.
Ogoun went further to posit that Governors were deliberately refusing to fund their premier universities, but preferred establishing new ones in their communities.
AFRICA TODAY NEWS, NEW YORK