Nigerian students under the banner of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) on Saturday threatened a showdown with the Federal Government and decided to shut down all the international airports nationwide in continuation of its protests against the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
The students said the steps became necessary to make the Nigerian leaders and the government feel the pains their students have been subjected to for the past seven months, which is the attitude of the federal government towards the striking lecturers as well as education as a whole reject.
The students rallied in Akure, the Ondo State capital on Saturday, saying the four-day closure of busy highways and expressways was a success, but said the move to disrupt international travel from September 19, 2022 is to make bourgeois and the government feel. the pains to which students submitted.
Speaking, the Chairman, NANS National Task Force on ‘End ASUU Strike Now’, Ojo Raymond Olumide, revealed that students were already tired of pleading with both parties on the need to end the strike.
Olumide said the federal government should prepare for another round of mother of all battles with the closure of all the international airports nationwide.
He stressed that airports will be occupied and grounded until the strike is called off, adding that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration should pay all outstanding arrears and salaries of the lecturers.
“We will start another round of protests next week by storming the airspace on Monday, September 19, 2022 to #OccupyTheAirports. We want to let the world know about the pains and anguish students go through.
“Nigerian students whose parents create the commonwealth cannot continue to suffer at home with our lecturers while the few who benefit from our sweat and blood let their children frolic and bow abroad.
“We call on students to stand up and join us as we take our destiny into our own hands. Our demands remain clear and simple throughout. We call on ASUU leadership for a meeting as soon as possible to discuss and plan solidarity actions for the next phase of the struggle.
“Nigerian students are not subjected to security agencies and we have not seen any move from them to prevent ASUU strike. He said they couldn’t tell them they weren’t aware of what was going on.
“I have been on the road for the past four days and have received a lot of solidarity. Grounding the airport is for us to gain solidarity and we will continue to ground the local and international airports.
“They know the effect of grounding the airport, the only thing we ask of them is to reopen our campuses. They should give enough budget allocation, we are not asking for 26 percent we are asking for 22 percent.
“We accept a motion of no confidence in both ministers of labor and education. We call on the Buhari government to pay all outstanding arrears and salaries of the lecturers. The policy of “No Work No Pay” is a fascist one; it is therefore condemnable and unacceptable to all the millions of students in Nigeria.
“We will, by this statement, not beg again. We will mobilize all students to shut down the country. No education! No Movement,” NANS chairman said.
Condemning the Minister of Works, Babatunde Raji Fashola, for his alleged comment on the blocking of federal roads by the students, Olumide stated that the strike continues due to the absence of children of the political class in public universities.
“By Nigerians, the federal and state governments became uncomfortable with our protests and still are. Instead of them responding to us responsibly, we were shocked that the Minister of Works Babatunde Fashola declared fundamental human rights ‘illegal’!
“Yet the minister’s outburst is also another proof that the Buhari government hates real educational development.
“They are never apologetic and are determined to destroy every vestige of state welfare that remains. They prefer to kill the public schools instead of fixing them up.
“Nigerian students are not surprised that the Buhari government does not care about public education. After all, all the politicians have their children going to school abroad while the children of the masses who make up 99 percent of the population are only fit to be thugs, hard workers and sex slaves.
“We dare to say that this cruelty will no longer continue. And on this note, we call on the national leadership of ASUU to synergize with Nigerian students in achieving this struggle we started by ensuring that a state of emergency is declared in the education sector.