Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, The National Chairman of ASUU earlier said the Federal Government does not see education as worth giving priority attention, which has encouraged the deadlock in the negotiations for government to meet the lecturers’ demands, adding that the government was always focusing on the salary aspect of their demands, forgetting the long drawn-out issues of funding, autonomy, and conducive environments for learning and working.
The chairman asked: “Do we still have public primary schools? Do we still have public secondary schools? Let us acknowledge what ASUU has brought to the system.
“ If not for ASUU, public universities would have collapsed totally. The government does not take education as a priority.
“We have schools without seats, we have laboratories without equipment and some use kerosene stoves as Bunsen burners.
“We need our universities to grow this country; we need our universities to innovate and develop this country.
“So funding the university system is not a waste, but an investment.”
When asked about the fate of students who have been home for over eight months, Biodun said: “Each time people talks about strikes, it has been there for long, they don’t also appreciate the solutions we have brought to the system.
“We have kept the system going. But for ASUU interventions, we would no longer have public universities today.
“Parents and students should understand that we want to bring the universities to the level where they would be proud of their certificates”, he said.