ASUU berates FG for university primary schools abrogation


Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU) Bauchi chapter has condemned the decision of the Federal Government to unilaterally abrogate the provision of free education to children of staff university primary schools.
The Union ATBU chapter Chairman, Adamu M Babayo said in a press conference in Bauchi weekend that the abrogation of the University Primary schools by the Government is a violation of the FG/ASUU 2009 agreement.
“The Federal Government decided to close down the University primary schools in the fear that there is no money to fund the school. The Government instructed the University administration not to include the staff primary school in 2016 budget which means Government is not honoring our agreement which we started since 1992”
“Since 1992 ASUU had agreement with the Federal Government that  they will fund completely the staff primary school while the agreement on the University secondary school is that parents  will be responsible  for the current expenditure while Government  will be responsible for capital expenditure”
Babayo said however that on the primary school it was agreed that government will fund it 100 %, “But unfortunately the Government has asked all universities to remove the funding of the primary school from 2016 budget without sitting with the management to look at the agreement”.
The Chairman also lamented the sack of 13 University Vice Chancellors by the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu which, he described, as a violation of MOU signed by FGN/ASUU in 2013.
According to him, the Federal Government similarly refused to abide with the 2013 MOU where it was decided that there will be University autonomy, but recently the Minister of Education decided to sack 13 Vice Chancellors which is a violation to the agreement.
“We wonder if the Minister knows what he is doing over the decision to sack and appoint 13 Vice Chancellor without meeting with university governing council because it is the mandate of the university council to remove and appoint vice chancellor and not the Minister”, Babayo frowned.
He also faulted the Federal government for its failure to implement some other agreements reached since 2009 which among them are funding of Universities, pension reform act, earned academic allowances (EAA) among others.
“As if the refusal to fully implement the agreement is not enough insult to the union, the Federal Government has taken steps that are strangulating the Universities and making no sense of the agreement. Some of the government policies and actions include, the single treasury account which is almost getting the Universities to their kneels”.
“Others include shortfall in salaries which has been on since December 2015 with the result that some Universities pay fractions salaries and budgetary allocation to education which is at an all-time low of 8 percent in 2016 against the UNESCO benchmark of minimum of 26%.
Babayo recalled that the union has made several efforts including writing letters as well as meeting with government officials but no sign by government to remedy the situation.
“Some of us may be tempted to say that this is a new Government but can this Government still be new even after almost one and half years in office? Can it be new to the extent that it can violate the agreements and Nigerian laws? Can it be new if it has resources to bail out states to settle their staff enrolments and not settle those of its own staff, Government is a continuum and must respect all agreements.
“We cannot afford the luxury of allowing them to toy with the destiny of our country by killing the public Universities so that they can profitably run their private ones which only their children can attend.
ASUU therefore called on its members to prepare to wage war against what it described as slave masters to preserve to public universities, adding “The union issues this call to prepare for yet another struggle for the liberation of our universities. If the government continues to be adamant, we will take a drastic action”.


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