Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU) Kano Zone has described the Nigerian government as insincere and deceptive for failing to honour the Memorandum of Action (MoA) signed on December 23 of last year.
Addressing journalists at the headquarters of the union at Bayero University Kano on Friday, the chairman of the zone Professor Abdulkadir Muhammad disclosed that part of the agreement, the government offered to inject N30 billion as tranche of N220 billion fund for revitalisation of Nigerian public universities, adding that for 222 days now, it was yet to release the money.
The chairman of the zone, comprising seven universities in Kano, Kaduna and Jigawa states, called on the government to urgently address the proliferation of state-owned universities in order to salvage the educational system of the country.
According to Muhammad, the government had also promised to release N25 billion to universities by May this year as part of the payment of Earned Academic Allowance (EAA), lamenting that “as at today, the government is yet to release the fund.”
He also expressed displeasure over the government’s failure to honour the agreement it signed in February, through the Ministry of Budget and Planning to release N170 billion as the balance of N220 billion, adding that “however, the government, in its usual manner of deceit, has yet to convene this meeting, not to talk of releasing the agreed balance.”
“It is very clear that the government has failed to address the core issues in the MOA of 23rd December, 2020 and the issues related to the draft of the renegotiated agreement of May, 2021.
“ASUU hopes that authorities, both at federal and state level, would give these matters the urgent attention they deserve to sustain and improve on the current industrial peace on our university campuses. Therefore, the government should, as a matter of urgency, address the issues for the sake of industrial harmony in our campuses,” he urged.
According to the chairman, the federal government claimed that the bill to amend Nigeria University Commission (NUC) Act with a view to empowering it towards addressing the proliferation of state-owned universities was before the National Assembly.
“We called on the National Assembly to, as a matter of urgency, consider and pass the bill due to bad governance and underfunding of such universities.
“He also stated categorically that our state-owned universities may soon collapse beyond redemption because visitors to such universities have turned establishment as a project for appeasing the electorate in their senatorial and state constituencies.”