ASUU Criticizes Government Over Neglect of Existing Universities

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has criticized both federal and state governments for allegedly turning education into a political tool by creating new public universities while neglecting the funding of existing ones.

ASUU Criticizes Government Over Neglect of Existing Universities

Melemi Abatcha, Chairperson of ASUU’s Federal University Gashua branch in Yobe State, expressed these concerns during a press conference in Damaturu on Thursday.

Abatcha explained how governments, particularly at the state level, have been treating university education as if it were a constituency project, similar to other political initiatives. This approach has led to the establishment of new universities without providing sufficient funding for those already in operation.

He expressed ASUU’s ongoing frustration with the inadequate funding for universities and the difficulties faced by academic staff.

“The federal government has not fulfilled its promises from 2023, including the allocation of N50 billion for the payment of the backlog of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA) and the integration of EAA into salaries from January 2022,” he stated.

Abatcha also noted that despite lecturers fulfilling their duties during forced strikes, their salaries remain withheld.

“Even with the directive of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for the removal of ASUU from the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) platform since December 2023, ASUU members are still being paid via the obnoxious platform (IPPIS),” he said.

He mentioned that the removal of the fuel subsidy without credible alternatives has caused significant hardship for the public, adding that the union does not wish to worsen the situation with further disruptions to academic activities.

ASUU has called on the government to be sensitive to the challenges faced by Nigerians and to promptly agree to and implement an acceptable living wage for Nigerian workers.

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