Students, Others Lament Over ASUU Strike
By Eke O. Theophilus
There have been much hue and cry by university students over the incessant strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities and the foremost one which has lasted for over a month now.
ASUU had embarked on an indefinite stroke following government’s inability to meet up to their demands over time. The effect of this, is that students are forced to return to their homes and this has made many moan and complain.
E Magazine embarked on a painstaking journey to several universities to meet with regents and students and inquire on their personal opinion on the on going strike. Speaking with a 300 level undergraduate of the University of Lagos, Ogundele Joshia, said that the recurrent strikes by ASUU have prolonged the number of years spent in the universities. Joshua pointed out that the crises have bastardised the educational standard, leaving the Nigerian educational system in a big mess.
Anita Okoli, a law student said: “Knowing that your mates in private institutions are graduating before you can be really depressing. It can lead to despondency.
“After resumption, academic activities are muddled up just to try to meet up with the academic calendar that has been drawn for the year.”
Another undergraduate of ABSU, Catherine Nkume, complained that the malaise in the education system may aggravate the crime rate, especially as students are now idle, frustrated and demotivayed.
“Most of us are at home now sleeping and waking up and only few of us have a sense of thinking that they should find something to do. They have forgotten that an idle mind is the devil’s workshop,” she said.
Enwereji Livingword, a regent of the aforementioned university, said the incessant strikes was creating a wide gap between the poor and the rich in the society, adding: “If not checked, some parents resort to unscrupulous means of sending their wards to private institutions.
“They are pushing our parents to start thinking of the private universities as a better option. What about those whose parents do not have money for private universities, should they steal? Seriously, we are not happy about the strike.”
Livingword, therefore, urged the government to consider the future of the country because the youths are the future of the nation and as such they should attend ASUU and pay its members their salaries. Meanwhile, Augustine Odoemena, a Political Science student at the university, added that the students were now susceptible to vices such as prostitution, stealing, gambling and terrorism. He urged the Federal Government to redeem the 2009 agreement with ASUU and meet the union’s demands, describing them as the panacea to the rot in the education sector.
E Magazine also spoke with parents who expressed their dissatisfaction with the continuing strike, describing it as a clog in the wheel of progress. They also added that many of their children are held up from not graduating because of the strike. Olaniyi David cried that his first son could not be admitted into the Law school as his mates from other universities were because his school had not finished their final papers before the strike began.
Meanwhile, FG had met with ASUU in the late hours of Thursday and a consensus was met. Hopefully, the strike would be called off this coming Monday.