Half salaries: Fear grips FUL students over possible ASUU strike

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Some students of the Federal University, Lokoja, FUL, Kogi State, on Sunday expressed the fear of a possible recurrence of another strike less than one month after the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, suspended its eight-month industrial action over funding of public universities in the country, welfare and other sundry issues.

According to them, their fear is anchored on the said half salaries the federal government paid to their lecturers for October, a development they described as another threat to the reopening of public universities after the strike that paralysed academic activities in such vital sector of the nation for many months.

Feelers from the National Executive Council of ASUU indicated on Sunday that the union is set to meet on Monday, to decide whether to embark on another strike or not.

DAILY POST gathered that the meeting, which is expected to take place at the University of Abuja campus, is on the heels of the October salary cut received by members of the union, after suspending their prolonged strike.

Some of the students, Musa Aliyu, Zainab Ahmed, Abubakar Abdullahi,Miss Naomi Abraham, Christopher Alli among others, who spoke with DAILY POST on Sunday evening in Lokoja, described the Monday meeting as crucial to the educational development or otherwise of the sector.

“We cannot afford to go through another strike by ASUU again,in view of the fact that students in public universities have lost eight months of academic activities with the sour effects on our educational pursuit,” Miss Naomi Abraham told DAILY POST on Sunday.

Abubakar Abdullahi said: “I am appealing to the federal government to pay university lecturers their normal salaries, because it was based on the agreement that their eight months salaries, representing the periods the strike lasted would be paid that the lecturers suspended the strike.

“For the sake of students and the future of Nigerian university education, I strongly believe that the government could over look whatever must have been the misgiving arising from the strike and pay the university lecturers concerned, for peace to reign supreme in our university system.”

Christopher Alli, who also aligned with the feelings of his colleagues on the brewing issue, urged the stakeholders, who made the strike to be suspended, not to allow their efforts go in vain.

“They need to go back with an appeal to the federal government to pay our lecturers so that we can graduate, serve the nation for one year NYSC and look for the scarce white-collar job or go into business,” he said.

Findings by our correspondent revealed that all 400 level students from the public universities, who did their industrial training in the country, cannot resume studies with their colleagues until March 2023, due to the disruption brought to bear on their schedule of IT training by the strike.