The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has decried the level of decay in Nigerian universities, saying 200 and 300 level students could not write simple letter. The Chairman of the Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, branch of the union, Dr. Mohammed Aliyu, said this yesterday while addressing a news conference in Zaria.
He said: “It is disheartening to note that students in 200 level, even 300 level, cannot write simple letter. This has shown how poor our education standard is.” Aliyu said the ongoing strike was not about salary increment, but to compel the Federal Government to honour the 2009 agreement with the union.
He said: “After three years of serious negotiation, government signed the October 2009 agreement with our union.
“The agreement was aimed at addressing the rot in the Nigerian university system and enhancing its overall efficiency.
“The agreement focuses on funding requirements for revitalisation of the Nigerian universities, Federal Government assistance to state universities. “Progressive increase in annual budgetary allocation to education to 26 per cent between 2009 and 2020 and amendment of the pension/retirement age of academics on the professional cadre from 65 to 70 years.”
The chairman said after signing the agreement, both Federal and state governments developed cold feet, forcing the union to embark on a warning strike before proceeding on an indefinite action.
Aliyu said ASUU had tried to avoid another round of crisis in the university system by writing to the Secretary to Government of the Federation and the Minister of Education in February, reminding them of the pending issues.