University students in Oyo and Ogun states on Monday staged protests against the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU).
The protests were held at strategic locations in the two states
Armed with banners bearing various inscriptions, the students urged the Federal Government and the lecturers to find a common ground to end the strike.
In Ogun, students from Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye (OOU); Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), and the Federal University Of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) blocked the Sagamu-Benin-Ore highway.
They held a banner with the inscription “Stop Toying with Our Education” as they marched on the road in protest.
Commenting on the protest, the TASUED Students’ Union President Sharon Great said they were shutting the highway to get the attention of the government on the need to end strike.
Sharon wondered why the Federal Government would hold on to lecturers’ salaries.
“We have all come here today to shut down the Benin-Ore Expressway so as to make our demands met by the Federal Government and to also pass a message to the state governments.
“If the FG can’t hold down the salaries of political office holders, why would they hold down the salaries of lecturers who work to mold Nigerian future leaders?ASUU strike must end!” she said.
Their counterparts in Oyo brought economic activities in Ibadan and other parts of the state to a standstill.
Students of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomosho barricaded the major road in front of the school.
They called on the Governor Seyi Makinde to pull out the school chapter of ASUU from the strike.
LAUTECH SUG President Anuoluwa Adeboye noted that students the institution has been through so many industrial crises in the past and should not be made to face more hardship.
ASUU had embarked on a four-week warning strike on February 18, 2022 to demand funding of the Revitalisation of Public Universities, payment of Earned Academic Allowances, acceptance of the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) for payment of salaries, and payment of promotion arrears.
Other demands include the endorsement of the renegotiated 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, which it said was concluded in May 2021; release of the reports of visitation panels to federal universities, and correction of distortions in salary payment.
On March 14, 2022, ASUU announced that it would continue its roll-over strike for another eight weeks to enable the Federal Government address issues in concrete terms.
The ICIR reported that ASUU extended the strike by three months on May 9.
Last week, President Muhammadu Buhari appealed to the striking lecturers to call off the strike.