Factional ASUU Chairman Blames National Leadership For Local Chapter Crisis

The Chairman, ASUU Progressives, Nnamdi Azikiwe University (NAU) chapter, Professor Maduabuchi Dukor has accused the central leadership of Academic Staff Union of Universities of keeping mum concerning the division between his faction of the association and ASUU NAU, over the university’s participation in the on-going strike.

Speaking on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, he said that “since the inception of that ASUU NAU led executives, there has been crisis” and they have painted the picture that they want to oust the Vice Chancellor at all cost.

The recent bone of contention between the two factions lies in the nation-wide strike embarked upon ASUU which they seem not to agree if they should participate or not, owing to ongoing examinations.

Mr Dukor accused the ASUU NAU faction on insisting that the university join the strike despite the fact that there is a provision for institutions which are conducting examinations.

Practical examinations had commenced in the school “about a week before the declaration of ASUU strike” in June.

He said the ASUU progressive faction had opposed the cancellation of the exams after the declaration of strike but “this body of executives of ASUU NAU led by Professor Ike Odimegwu said no, that the university must join the strike”.

“We know that ASUU has a provision of making an arrangement for an ongoing exam”.

ASUU National remained silent on that. He said.

University of Ilorin, Imo state University, University of Nigeria (Nsukka), Kogi State University are institutions which have concluded their examinations in spite of the strike.

Mr Dukor also accused the NAU faction of trying to oust the Vice Chancellor by publishing libelous articles on the internet, accusing him of abuse of funds and administration and instigating crisis in the school.

“When they failed in that agenda, they moved over to the issue of the tenure of the vice chancellor.”

The Vice Chancellor was pressured to leave office after 4 years; however, he was in acting capacity for a year. Citing the case of President Goodluck Jonathan, Mr Dukor said “acting capacity is not counted anywhere”.

He said the declaration of ASUU strike has given leeway for fresh attacks against the university management.

ASUU Strike: Education Minister Has Not Helped Matters

A public affairs analyst, Chima Nnaji, has said that the Minister of Education, Ruqayat Rufai is not helping the on-going industrial strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and accused of treating the situation in an off-handed manner.

“The Minister of Education has not being helping matters” by “talking glibly.” This, he said, is a very cheap way of looking at a very serious problem.

He said “she ought to sit with her team to take a very incisive analysis of the issues moving forward”.

Speaking on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, Mr Nnaji said “she ought to sit with her team to take a very incisive analysis of the issues moving forward”.

The strike action embarked upon by the union is currently in 6th week, however, students may have to wait some more before an agreement is reached between the body and the Federal Government.

Mr Nnaji said “it appears it’s still a long wait” but added that the strike may be called off “anything from next week Tuesday, if it is possible.”

He accused President Goodluck Jonathan and government officials of paying little or no attention to the problems of the education sector and focusing attention on 2015. It is very unfortunate thing because “education is the most primary thing government should provide.”

“The ministers, governors, president, all the people in government are geared towards 2015.”

First, government must accept responsibility because “an agreement is an agreement” and must be respected.

The ASUU strike is happening at a time where there is proliferation of federal universities but “if you do not prepare the child of today for tomorrow, there is no future for this country.”

He addressed the issue of unqualified lecturers and called them to examine themselves. “How many of them are good enough to teach. What is the content of their teaching?”