Tuesday, 21 June 2016

NSUK strike: Deputy Governor meets student leaders

Appeals for calm
To meet ASUU, NSUK Management

Troubled by the renewed strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, and the chaotic atmosphere that followed the announcement, the Deputy Governor of Nasarawa state, Silas Agara, today invited student leaders in Nasarawa State University to Lafia where he appealed for calm as the government tries to find solution to the problem.

The Deputy Governor who sympathised with the students, appealed to them not to engage in any act that will worsen the current situation, as any act of protest may be hijacked by hoodlums resulting in break down of law and order.

"The purpose of this interaction is not to join issues with anyone--ASUU nor management of the University-- but to get to the root of the problem and address the pending issue.

"We do not want a repeat of what happened last time”, referring to the 2013 incident that led to the loss of lives of some students.

"Nothing is worth the life of any human being", he emphasised

He assured the students that as a responsible government, the persistent ASUU strike in the institution is a major concern of the present administration and promised that everything is being done to restore normal activities in NSUK.

He stressed: "whatever we are doing is in the best interest of the university".

He called on all stakeholders to show understanding in the face of the present economic situation, as Nasarawa state is not immuned to the financial misfortune bedevilling the country which has affected the operations of government.

Agara said he "feels sad and disturbed" about the condition of the students, while assuring that the state government will do everything within its powers to bring the current problem to an end.

"I remembered during our time, we had to stay at home for 13 months and I don't want you to go through similar experience", he said.

The Deputy Governor said the state government has been faithful to its obligation to the workforce of the state, even in the face of challenging economic situation, but the university had suffered from months of closure within which it was unable to generate enough fund to complement the monthly subvention from the state government.

He stated that closing the school is not the best option, as this will continue to affect the institution negatively.

"With the closure of the university for three months, there is already a revenue generation loophole.

"It is important that stakeholders should sit and find solution to the impasse", he said.

He encouraged the students to be responsive and commit themselves to the resolution of the crisis, by staying calm and peaceful, and engaging critical stakeholders in dialogue that will lead to the end of the strike.

Earlier, the leader of the student delegation and chairman, National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS Joint Campus Committee, Ibrahim Maiyanga, told the Deputy governor that urgent steps should be taken to end the strike to relieve the students of their current sufferings, having just survived similar scenario few weeks ago.

Others who spoke, including Presidents of Faculty of Arts, Education, Administration, MACOSA and a prominent NANS leader, Joseph Agada, expressed their displeasure on the current problem facing the University and called on government to intervene quickly.

It is also learnt that similar meeting will be held between the government and ASUU, and with NSUK management, between today and tomorrow.

The high powered government officials at the meeting included the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Hon. Balarabe Abdullahi; the Secretary to the State Government, Amb. Suleiman Azores; the Commissioner for Education, Rammatu Ajuji; SA to the Governor on ICT and Command Centre, Hamza Elayo; SA to the Governor on Youth, Students and NGO, Joseph Akala, among others.

by: Ofim, Kelechi Ofim

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