– Students might be returning to universities soon after months at home due to the coronavirus pandemic
– Education minister, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, said most people want FG to resolve the industrial action embarked upon by ASUU before reopening
– Nwajiuba, therefore, urged the union to call off its strike
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Tertiary institutions in Nigeria will reopen “very soon”, according to Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, the minister of state for education.
The minister said that the federal government is also making moves to end the ongoing Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike before schools reopen.
This was disclosed by Nwajiuba during a programme that aired on the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) on Saturday, August 22.
He said vice-chancellors have been clamouring for those in exit classes to resume in earnest and private schools have also requested to be allowed to resume.
“Tertiary institutions across the country will open very soon.
“Private universities have written us, requesting that they are allowed to reopen ahead of public institutions. Vice-chancellors have also requested that we allow them to reopen for their students in exit classes,” he said.
Schools across the country, tertiary institutions have been shut since March following the coronavirus pandemic.
Nwajiuba noted that many people want the federal government to resolve the ASUU strike before reopening. These people believe some public schools which are not ASUU-prone want to take advantage of the strike to move ahead.
The education minister said if this is allowed, it would destroy public schools.
He added that ahead of the reopening, the National Universities Commission (NUC) would have to do an appraisal of the state of tertiary institutions.
Nwajiuba appealed to the union to put an end to their strike as their grievances “have more or less been resolved”.
Nigerian students are already mounting pressure on the government to reopen the citadels of learning.
On Wednesday, August 19, an army of students took to the streets of Abuja to demand the reopening schools despite the heavy threat from police and DSS.
The students under the aegis of National Association of Polytechnic Students (NAPS), National Association of University Students (NAUS), National Association of College of Education Students (NACES) vowed to continue to shut down Abuja and all the 36 states.
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