...Blocks Federal Secretariat gate
FOLLOWING the declaration of four-week warning strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Monday, leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has threatened nationwide protests.
National president of NANS, Sunday Asefon, immediately after the strike announcement by ASUU, led scores of students to protest against the strike and blocked the entrance gate to Phase I, Federal Secretariat Complex, housing the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, among others.
It took the intervention of a police officer, A. H. Abdullahi, to pacify the students with the promise to arrange a meeting for them with the minister. A statement signed by the NANS National Vice President (Special Duties), Odiahi Thomas Ikhine, made available to newsmen during the protest, read: “ASUU has, over the years, displayed a high level of disregard for students and their leadership.
“The union has continually seen students as object for selfish negotiation, blackmail etc. In the classroom, its members are monsters known for oppressing and extorting innocent students and when its members are disciplined for such erring behaviour by constituted authorities, they react by looking for something to pick on to blackmail and subdue the authorities.
“Our call is that ASUU as a union should look for alternative way of sorting things out with their employer and stop seeing students as object of blackmail or a tool for negotiation.
“On the above note, NANS is calling on ASUU and the Federal Government to urgently look for a way to sort out whatever issue they may have, as Nigerian students will no longer be used as an object of negotiation or settlement of disputes.
“All union presidents, joint campus committees, zonal structures of NANS are by this notice mandated to begin to mobilise Nigerian students to barricade all major highways in the country, as well as prepare to occupy all academic staff quarters all over the country within 48 hours, starting from Monday, February 14, 2022.
“We urge all students not to vacate the school halls of residence, as well as remain calm as further directive will be given by the NEC of NANS.”
The union also has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu and Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, for failing to resolve the impasse between ASUU and Federal Government.