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Ex- Education Minister, Nwajiuba, ignorant, should mind his business —ASUU

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Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, the immediate past Minister of State for Education, was on Tuesday told by the Academic Staff Union of Universities to focus on his presidential campaign and avoid intervening in the union’s affairs.

This comes amid protests by university students against the federal government’s failure to resolve the ASUU-government standoff.

Nwajiuba, who quit last week due to his presidential ambitions, had argued that state institutions shouldn’t have joined the strike because most of ASUU’s demands were issues that federal universities were dealing with.

“State universities have no business with the ASUU strike. The demands that were laid down contained issues relating to federal universities and their employer, which is the Federal Government.

“For instance, ASUU talked about the introduction of University Transparency and Accountability Solution for the payment of salaries of federal lecturers. Why are state universities engaged in a struggle between the Federal Government and lecturers of federal universities? It is the state government that pays state universities, so why the need for the strike?

Read also: Shehu Sani backs Nigerian students, calls for more protests over ASUU strike

“We are optimistic that the strike will be called off soon. They agreed to meet with the government and that is a good step. I have always been a firm believer that you do not have to go on strike before your demands are met,” the former Minister had noted.

However, the National President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, in an interview with The PUNCH countered that ASUU is a union of all academics in Nigerian public universities in response to Nwajiuba’s comment on the union’s ongoing strike.

Osodeke said, “Nwajiuba doesn’t know anything, he is ignorant. Is Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board conducting exams for federal universities alone? Is National Universities Commission regulating only federal universities?

“He knows nothing, thank God he has left. He should concentrate on his campaign; he should leave ASUU and government alone. He should leave us alone and go and do his campaign to become president.

“When they get TETfund, does it go to federal universities alone? Even NEEDS assessment? When Nigeria Labour Congress negotiates salaries, does it go to federal workers alone? He is trying to get public support by talking about ASUU; he has left us and we have left him and we are not talking about him.”

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