When will the Federal Government honour its own agreement with the academic staff of public universities in Nigeria? When will the academic staff too think out of the box, call off industrial action that has literally paralysed academic activities in Nigeria? When will governments at all levels pay attention to robust investment in education in the country beyond the meretricious declaration of emergency on education? When will the authorities understand that there is a correlation between quality in education and the state of development?
Finding answers to these questions should be part of the issues that should dominate discussion on politics and development at this time. The nation should be tired of incessant strike that have not solved any problems of education and development in Africa’s most populous nation.
In other words, the current industrial action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) did not come as a surprise given that the Union is virtually on standby to go on strike at the least provocation on account of the myriad of endemic problems plaguing the university system.
The strike is undoubtful, a tool to discourage students. It triggers some indecent actions and illegal job among youths as some youths have even lose hope in education.The disagreement or lacks of understanding between the two sides often result in a deadlock that usually disrupts academic calendar.
As the employer of the academic staff and as the organ that must cater for its citizen welfare, the federal government is expected to settle the dispute.
On this note, the need for a total revolution on our education sector should be paramount in the minds of government at the federal and state levels. Factors that often lead to strike in our institutions should be addressed.
The government should always try to honour whatever agreement reached with the academic communities. It is worth emphasising that any government with a poor education system is heading towards a black future.
At this juncture, the academic unit of higher learning should seek other means other than embarking on strike to resolve issues. This is because of the negative effect frequent strikes have had on students and the entire academic community.
- Obas Adekunle, Lagos.