The leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has called on the National Assembly to intervene in the lingering crisis involving the university lecturers and the Federal Government in order to ensure early resolution.
The student’s body has accordingly, issued a two-week ultimatum to both the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), within which to resolve the impasse or face the anger of students nationwide.
NANS president, Comrade Sunday Asefon stated this at the end of its expanded National Executive Council (NEC) meeting, which was held following the continuation of ASUU strike.
The meeting passed vote of no confidence on the minister of labour and employment and his education counterpart Adamu Adamu to continue to lead government negotiation team, saying that they are either incompetent to engage productively with ASUU at the highest level or they lack the goodwill and trust to build consensus and find amicable resolution.
We call for the immediate intervention of traditional institutions and religious institutions to prevail on the Federal Government and ASUU to reopen our universities while they continue their negotiation. We believe that every sector of the nation shall be adversely affected by our actions if this strike is not called off.
We are appalled by the continued insincerity on the part of the leadership of ASUU in meeting our national leadership to hear directly from them as our fathers on the real area of contention.
We therefore advise the Federal Government and ASUU in their best interests to reach a compromise between now and Monday 28th March 2022 or risk our unprecedented fury. We hope the time between now and the 28th will afford our influential past leaders the window of opportunity to lobby their friends in government to see the danger our collective rage will cause the nation.
The National Assembly should also do everything possible within this time to end the strike. Since they rejected the bill prohibiting public officers from sending their wards to institutions abroad, they have the mandate to make our public institutions work and now that they are failing in that responsibility, the public will respond appropriately.
Should the strike continue after our ultimatum, students across the country will resume to the new university created by the Federal Government and ASUU called The University of the Street, with Main Campus on the Airport Road, Annex Campuses in all the Major Roads in Abuja and Distance Learning Centres in all the Federal Roads across the 36 States of the Federation. I therefore direct students to bring their mattresses and cooking utensils while resuming in their new campus in Abuja and all the designated campuses across the country,” the statement said.
They also blamed ASUU for refusing to meet and talk to the students after several efforts.
We have met with Federal Government representatives and have heard directly from them, but all efforts to meet ASUU leadership are being consciously frustrated by ASUU leadership.
We are also aware that revitalization of our universities is not the main issue of contention between ASUU and the Federal Government but issues concerning payment platform and renegotiation of the 2009 agreement.
We have tried our best not to direct our rage towards ASUU but the federal government. However, ASUU is leaving us with no option than to enlist them on the list of our enemies, and we will serve ASUU on the same part as the Federal Government.”