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FG, ASUU Face-off Responsible For Non-inclusion Of Varsities In Schools’ Reopening – Afe Babalola



The founder of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, (ABUAD), Aare Afe Babalola, (SAN) has blamed non-inclusion of tertiary institutions final year students in the federal government’s plan to reopen schools on its face off with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

He urged the federal government to treat education as a necessary social service like the power sector where strike actions are forbidden.

Babalola who described ASUU as the ‘Commander-in-Chief’ of Nigerian public universities, said he was not surprised because he knew the reason why the government left out the final year students of universities in the country.

The federal government had in March, ordered a blanket closure of all educational institutions in the country to curtail the spread of the deadly Coronavirus.

Final year students in primary and secondary Schools particularly those in in Primary Six, JSSIII and SSSIII were, however, directed to resume and take their final year examinations, leaving out the final year students in universities.

Babalola in a statement by the university’s head of corporate affairs, Mr Tunde Olofintila, added that the federal government was aware that if it directed final year students of public universities to resume, the ‘almighty’ ASUU would object and in this case, ASUU has objected.

Drawing from his seven-year experience as Pro-chancellor and chairman of Council at the University of Lagos, Babalola said, “Before I took over as Pro-chancellor and chairman of Council at the University of Lagos, even Council meetings could not take place unless ASUU and other Unions had been appeased or else such Council meetings would not be allowed to hold.

It was a serious matter at that time, but I successfully managed that.”