The Director-General of the Progressives Governors Forum, Dr. Salihu Lukman, has described the seemingly unending power tussle between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities, as the greatest disservice to Nigeria’s public education system.
Lukman noted that there was enough blame to go around on both sides if the blame game was to be relied upon.
He, however, said, amidst the accusations, counter-accusations and the destructively long strikes, the nation’s public education system and our teeming youths have been the worst for it.
This was contained in a statement titled, “ASUU and Indeterminate Power Struggle – The Boko Haram Logic,” which he signed and made public in Abuja, on Sunday.
He further noted that to make proposals aimed at resolving the dispute based on an assessment of who was right and who was wrong will be unhelpful.
The PGF DG said, “It is important for everyone to take responsibility adding that nobody is right and everyone is wrong.
Neither ASUU nor FG is right.
He added that both ASUU and FG are wrong and that the best way to demonstrate this is with reference to the agreement that ASUU members are celebrating.”
He stressed that part of what some were celebrating included the release of N40 billion Earned Academic Allowances and another N30 billion revitalisation fund.
According to him, besides these issues, there are other unresolved issues, which include: the demand for the replacement of the Integrated Personnel and Payroll System with University Transparency and Accountability Solution, and implementation of the FG-ASUU agreement of 2009 bordering on university autonomy and funding.
He urged the federal government to consider taking the negotiation to the presidential level instead of the current ministerial level.
Lukman equally urged the government to restore the production of national development plans to promote investment in key national and state infrastructure projects as well as establish a new position within the Presidency that will be mandated to coordinate all government actions aimed at achieving the national development objectives.