The Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities have been urged by the Senate to bring to an end the crisis between them which has led to industrial action by lecturers.
Senator Barau Jibrin, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFUND, who moved a motion on the strike at the plenary on Wednesday, blamed the Federal Government for not implementing the agreements it reached with Asuu.
Seconding the motion, Senator Shehu Sani said Asuu strike was a national problem.
Sani said, “The issues raised by Asuu are important. The Federal Government needs to fund public universities. The issues raised by Asuu are in the best interest of education in Nigeria and our young people. Our universities need adequate funding and adequate attention.”
Adding his voice, Senator Mao Ohuabunwa stated that government should begin to live up to its responsibility. He said when he was the Vice-Chairman of the Senate Committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity, the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, intervened in the last face-off between the government and lecturers.
Saraki said, “Apart from calling off the strike, it is important for the Federal Government to honour the agreements they have reached with Asuu as soon as possible so that this matter can be resolved. ASUU should also bear in mind the interest of all Nigerians and ensure that they find an amicable solution to this.”
Jibrin also called on the Federal Government to resolve its problems with Asuu.
He said, “The Senate further notes that in the true spirit of its good intention towards Asuu, the Federal Government in the last two days promised the release of N20bn to the union, conscious of the disruptive consequences of another Asuu strike on the nation’s education and the need to safeguard the educational progress of our university students.
“The Senate is further aware that the nation’s economy is still fragile due to the declining revenue from oil. The Senate is convinced that there is now an urgent need for the Federal Government and Asuu to resolve all the contending issues through dialogue in order to arrive at a common ground of understanding.”