Academic and social activities returned to the various universities after the suspension of nationwide strike by Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), last Monday. Blueprint which monitored the return of students revealed how number of passengers increased in various motor parks, even as drivers cashed-in to increase their fares. Some students, who spoke with Blueprint expressed gladness that they have eventually gone back to school and commended the union for suspending the strike, stating that the action was creating problems for students.
Specifi cally Nnoye Okechukwu, a student of Imo State University, Owerri, said she would have come to Abuja, but for the closure of her school. She thanked the federal government for accepting to implement the demands of the union, and advised that government should not be waiting till unions embarked on strike before their agreements could be implemented. Miss Favour Oyeneye of the University of Abuja said she was happy to return to school, adding that “although I am off -campus, the return has made me happy, at least we would continue with our lectures”.
She expressed regrets that there had been incessant strikes in the university system, noting that this had contributed to the fallen standard of education in the country. “You can’t have it very good. Imagine that you were cooking and suddenly your light goes out, when you return with the light, you cannot have that stuff the same as it would be. “Learning needs continuity and if any should punctuate the period of study, it should be normal academic breaks, not strike because strike has a lot of psychological eff ects on students”, she added.
Within the week, National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) faction led by Chinonso Obasi had commended the federal government and ASUU for reaching a truce that called for the suspension of the 36 days strike. In a statement in Abuja, Obasi said suspending the strike had shown that “dialogue was the best way to settle industrial disputes”. Th e students urged the federal government to comply with the ‘Memorandum of Action’ (MoA) as labeled by the union, to avert further strikes. Recalled that while suspending the strike , ASUU President Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, had said that the union decided to’ conditionally’ suspend the strike in view of the timeline of October 2017 for the implementation of the signed agreement.