ASUU and Nigerian Education | The Guardian Nigeria News


Chief Obafemi Jeremiah Oyeniyi Awolowo (1909 – 1987) served as Premier of the Western Region from 1952 to 1959, a total of seven years, but the profound influence he had on Nigerian education persisted from the 20th to the 21st century. Maybe he would be there forever, no one can tell. Therefore, it is possible for thoughtful politics to influence any aspect of society. Thus with the Union of Academic Staff of Universities (ASUU). It does not matter whether or not the policy was followed by future governments or institutions. In the case of the ASUU, it was not followed. Despite this, ASUU influenced not only universities but also primary and secondary education. I am not sure about pre-primary education.

ASUU was established in 1987 not only to look after the welfare of members of the intellectual class of universities, but also the welfare of Nigerians. They did it by joining unions. They have been unable to influence the trade unions, thanks to the regressive educational policy of Nigerian governments. The ASUU uses strikes to make its case, but the government would not bulge out. They promise but don’t follow through on what they promised. Or they accept certain aspects of the agreement as far as money is concerned but reject the programs with socialist tendencies. As far as the governments are concerned, all their programs have a socialist tendency. No graduating set, beginning in 1987, was affected, no, distressed by the ASUU strike. ASUU’s longest strike was on February 17, 2020 when ASUU began a nine-month strike over university funding and the “integrated payment portal system feature” in which they argued that the system denies the autonomy of universities.

In early 2022, ASUU began another strike “after a prolonged disagreement over the ‘non-implementation’ of a December 2020 agreement reached between faculty and the government”. “Prolonged” disagreements between speakers and government would be a statement that would occur and recur in the narrative of discussions between speakers and governments. The government disputes that the level of education has fallen. This is the reason why members of the government send their children to universities abroad. This argument is invalid. Speakers argue that if universities were well funded, there would be no problem. Nigeria is rich enough to fund free university education if politicians stop stealing the entire budget. Of course, no one answers that!

A second-year student says she escaped any affliction in her career because only part of her exams were postponed until the next term. This might have a slight effect on his upbringing for the time being. The last meeting between the Minister of Education that I watched on television was a listening session, with the Minister doing the listening. When the session ended and the minister got up to leave, ASUU burst into song: Soli, soli, solidarity forever! Soli, soli, Solidarity forever! We are going to walk!!! The student feels that the year is too short to begin to predict how it will expand. “Just let us watch. Sometimes yes, better to come! Solidarity forever!!!”

What is the attitude of the students towards the lecturers on strike? Some students use the time to learn a trade such as sewing, hairdressing or cooking. The longer the strike lasted, the better it was for them to finish their run. But students can only support staff in wanting better funding for universities. If their professors were better paid and the laboratories better equipped, they would now be better educated. Or not, it depends.

Those who must be the greatest benefactors of better university funding are those who do not support the programs offered, who do not support the university refinancing programs. They are the ones who send their children to foreign universities. University education is cheaper in Nigeria than at any foreign university. Yet they would prefer any foreign university. Does it have anything to do with pride in owning money? Any possession of money has to do with stealing money from the government. And no one is ready to confess the sources of their wealth. One day, a person might be able to empower the person to change their narrative.

In my time, it was the universities that admitted us to their universities that we attended like Oxford or Cambridge, Harvard or Yale. Nowadays, any university would do as long as it is overseas, even Ghana. Secondary education is still universally expensive in Nigeria and the quality is still good as their products are easily admitted to foreign universities. If universities could take advantage of college admissions, it would help so many parents.

Although primary education is crucial in the education system, many parents do not pay much attention to it. It could be the basis of education if taken seriously. It could be the foundation of Geopolitics as of History, the foundation of all knowledge in education. Geography, politics, and history provide the bright student with the educational foundation they need. The sciences will add to the amount of knowledge he or she needs, depending on what profession the person wants to pursue in life. The most fundamental of sciences is mathematics after subjects such as physics, chemistry, biology and integrated sciences and AI, artificial intelligence. With a solid background in these subjects, secondary education will be an overview.

Despite what happened to free education, some of which I saw in Fagbamigbe’s house, it’s still something to remember. One evening, it is Fagbamigbe’s turn to appoint someone to the post of education commissioner. He said disparagingly that others will help him, the person, through the alleged free education situation. It’s powerful enough that those who missed it wish they hadn’t missed it. Those who experienced it could only wonder if they were making the best use of it. Examples for all of us as history is written.

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