Some Nigerians have urged the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to resist any attempt to call off its ongoing industrial action, following the arrest of the Accountant General of the Federation, AGF, Ahmed Idris by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, over alleged N80bn fraud.
Recall, EFCC in a statement issued on Monday May 16, 2022 announced the arresst of the Accountant General after failing to honour the commission’s invitations to respond to issues connected to the fraudulent act.
The statement said Eighty Billion Naira mismanaged funds by the serving AGF were laundered via real estate investments in Kano and Abuja.
The development has generated a lot of reactions from Nigerians who wondered how can a person siphoned such amount of public funds while the country is being ranked as world’s poverty nation and when activities of public tertiary institutions in the country have been grounded due to unavailability of funds claimed by the government.
Academic activities in government owned universities in the country have been on hold since at least February 14, 2022 when ASUU declared warning strike to demand from the government satisfactorily implementation of the Memorandum of Action (MoA) it signed with the Union in December 2020 on renegotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, deployment of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS),
Others include; Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), funding for revitalization of public universities (both Federal and States), proliferation and governance issues in State Universities, promotion arrears, withheld salaries (owed for over 20 months in some cases), and Non-emittance of third-party deductions.
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Nigerians questioned that if one person in the government can mismanaged such huge amount of money, the government is seemly not serious about about the plight of students let alone the future of young Nigerians.
They therefore held that, the striking varsity unions which include Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Senior Academic Staff of Universities (SANU), Non-Academic Staff of Universities (NASU), and National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) should be ready to go back to work only if their demands have been met by the government.
Reno Omokri wrote; “If the Accountant General of the Federation can steal ₦80 billion, you have no reason to end your strike. Ask Buhari to use the stolen ₦80 billion to pay you and keep the change. After all, the money ASUU is asking for is not even up to ₦80 billion!
Engr. Akhabue said; “ASUU if you guys are wise, don’t call off the strike, let the Accountant General transfer the N80bn he stole to your account. Nigerian students should occupy every single road in this country, maybe this is the beginning of the end.”
Jatto Naomi wrote; “If you ever blamed ASUU for going on strike then you must have been ignorant of the foul plays of this our Govts.”
Buchi 2ME said; ASUU is demanding for N200bn that the whole federal and state universities will share for the benefit of millions of Nigerian youths, only one man carried eighty billion naira.”
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Meanwhile, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) have began its two weeks warning strike today, May 16, 2022.
The union said the decision became imperative following the failure of the government to implement the Memorandum of Action (MoA) signed in June, 2021, which informed the suspension of its two-month strike at the time.
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