- Festus Keyamo believes the federal government has handled the ASUU strike which has lasted for over five months very well
- The labour and employment minister wants parents to appeal to the union to return to the classrooms
- Nigerians are not having it, and are on social media attacking the minister, who some have described as delusional
The minister of state for labour and employment, Festus Keyamo, has urged all Nigerian parents to beg the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
“Should we go and borrow to pay N1.2 trillion yearly? You cannot allow one sector of the economy to hold you by the jugular and then blackmail you to go and borrow N1.2 trillion for overheads when our total income would be about N6.1 trillion. And you have roads to build, health centres to build, other sectors to take care of.”
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Keyamo called on the lecturers to return to the classroom, noting that they are not the only ones in Nigeria.
He added that Nigeria cannot grind to a halt just because they want to meet ASUU’s demands.
Nigerians criticise Keyamo
Some Nigerians, after listening to the minister talk, accused him of hypocrisy.
Henry Peters @HenryPe03333748 commented:
“I felt sick listening to Festus Keyamo! His arrogance and hypocrisy is nauseating. The dude is deluded, very nasty piece of work.”
Akíntúndé Babátúndé @olorunwababs stated:
“May we not have the misfortune of people like Festus Keyamo close to power again in Nigeria.”
Reno Omokri @renoomokri added:
“What Festus Keyamo said about ASUU on Channels is unfortunate. How can a government abandon their duties to resolve the ASUU crisis and ask parents to go and beg ASUU? ASUU has been begging this government. Yet, when Niger begged them, Buhari gave them ₦1.1 billion!”
Dr Dípò Awójídé @OgbeniDipo commented:
“No end in sight for ASUU strike. Listened to Festus Keyamo this evening and all I can do today is feel sorry for everyone involved.”
What does ASUU want?
The union has vowed not to call off the strike until the Nigerian government meets its demands which include, improved welfare, revitalisation of public universities and academic autonomy among others.
Another bone of contention is the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS). The union proposed an alternative payroll system, the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) for the payment of salaries and allowances of university lecturers.
The academics are also fighting over the non-payment of university revitalisation funds, which amounts to about N1.1 trillion.
But the Federal Government has said it doesn’t have the money to pay such an amount, citing low oil prices during the Muhammadu Buhari administration.