ASUU chides FG over poor al­lo­ca­tion to ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - NEWS - From Muyiwa Adeyemi, Head, South West Bureau, Ibadan

THE Aca­demic Staff Union of Uni­ver­si­ties (ASUU) has chided the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment for ap­pro­pri­at­ing what it de­scribed as a “pal­try seven per cent to the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor” in the 2018 bud­get.

The union said ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tions in Nige­ria had never been so under-funded as cur­rently be­ing ex­pe­ri­enced.

ASUU won­dered why the Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari gov­ern­ment was pre­par­ing the coun­try for greater doom by starv­ing its higher in­sti­tu­tions of funds.

Chair­man of ASUU, Univer­sity of Ibadan (UI) chap­ter, Dr. Deji Omole, who stated this in an in­ter­view, noted that Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment’s fail­ure to al­lo­cate enough funds for its pub­lic ter­tiary ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem was al­ready caus­ing cri­sis be­tween uni­ver­si­ties ad­min­is­tra­tion and stu­dents in the count r y .

“It will be dif­fi­cult to have a cit­i­zen that will love the coun­try in the fu­ture if the trend of aban­don­ing the poor while tak­ing care of the rich is not re­versed. While each se­na­tor col­lects N13.5m as run­ning cost per month, the same Sen­ate ap­pro­pri­ated N66m for cap­i­tal projects for the Univer­sity of Ibadan with a stu­dents’ pop­u­la­tion of about 30,000.

“This can only hap­pen in Nige­ria where the rul­ing class lacks vi­sion. The same gov­ern­ment re­fuses to fund the re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion of pub­lic uni­ver­si­ties. Now, most chil­dren of the masses are de­nied ac­cess be­cause uni­ver­si­ties can­not ad­mit be­yond what their di­lap­i­dated in­fras­truc­ture can take.

“Yet, their par­ents can­not af­ford pri­vate uni­ver­si­ties. The Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment is ow­ing about N800 bil­lion re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion funds to pub- lic uni­ver­si­ties as con­tained in its agree­ments with ASUU.”

Omole, who noted that ASUU would op­pose any plan to force or­di­nary Nige­rian stu­dents out of school by im­pos­ing high fees, said the rul­ing All Pro­gres­sives Congress (APC) has per­formed poorly in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor.

He added that the United States of Amer­ica funds its pub­lic uni­ver­si­ties be­cause the USA was in­ter­ested in bridg­ing the gap be­tween the rich and the poor knows the neg­a­tive im­pli­ca­tion of hav­ing a grow­ing pool of il­lit­er­ates as we have in Nige­ria.

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