The ongoing warning strike by the members of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) has paralysed academic activities at the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic (MAPOLY) in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
Southwest Zonal Chairman of ASUP, Mr Olawale Olatunji, said that the union had resolved to embark on a warning strike at its emergency NEC meeting held on January 25.
He explained that the industrial action was to call the attention of the government to critical issues affecting polytechnics across Nigeria.
Mr Olatunji noted that the warning strike became imperative in view of the “unconcerned posture of the Federal Government” to issues raised towards revamping polytechnic education from imminent collapse.
“As it were, the union has been in negotiation with government on the situation in the polytechnic sector. Our agitations centred on the need not to allow polytechnic education head towards a state of collapse.
“Our agitations range from the need for the implementation of the ‘needs assessment’ that was done in 2014, victimisation of union leaders in our polytechnics (and) the release of whitepaper on the removal of the discrimination against HND holders; it is obvious the government is not being sincere about these issues.
“In July 2016, the union informed the government about its intention to down tool if those demands were not met, (but) the Minister of Education appealed.
“The union stepped down in November (while) another move was made and we gave the government up till the end of 2016 but when no action was taken, we have to resort to a warning strike to press home our demands,” the ASUP Zonal Chairman said.
Ogun State-owned Moshood Abiola Polytechnic (MAPOLY) in Abeokuta will soon become a degree awarding institution.
The Governor of Ogun State, Ibikunle Amosun, gave the hint on Thursday at the 14th convocation ceremony of the institution held at the school premises in the state’s capital, southwest Nigeria.
According to Governor Amosun, the upgrade is to put the institution on a sound footing to develop and deploy appropriate technologies and competences in the socio-economic development of Ogun State.
Restating the commitment of his administration towards qualitative and affordable education at all levels, he called for more public and private participation in the development of the education sector.
The Governor also admonished the graduating students to be good ambassadors of the country as well as make integrity and self-control their watch word.
In his remark, the Rector of MAPOLY, Oludele Itiola, called for the redirection of Nigeria’s intellectual development by nurturing graduates needed for the challenges of the 21st century.
Graduands were turned out in the schools of engineering, environmental studies, business and management studies, communication and technology, as well as science and technology for the awards of National and Higher National Diploma.
The graduation ceremony was for the 2009 through 2015 sets of MAPOLY.
A protest by students of the Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago Iwoye, Ogun State, has paralysed activities in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
The protest which began on a peaceful note later got violent after the police fired tear gas to disperse the students.
The students vandalised vehicles and other public property, forcing civil servants, who were on their way to work, to return home as the protesting students occupied the Presidential Boulevard leading to their offices and the governor’s office.
The students, who started their protest as early as 6.30am, caused traffic jam on major roads like Oke Ilewo, Kuto and Ibara among others.
An armoured personnel carrier had been stationed at Kuto Roundabout to prevent the students from moving to the governor’s office.
The Olabisi Onabanjo University students have demanded a further reduction of their school fees, after the governor announced a reduction earlier in the week. They also want the reduction to commence from the current academic session and not the next as proposed by the State government.
The protesters had on Thursday had a brief clash with rival students of the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic who came to declare support for the governor