The Vice-Chancellor, Federal University, Oye Ekiti(FUOYE), Prof. Abayomi Fasina has urged the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to avert the impending industrial action in the overall interest of students and education as a whole.
Professor Fasina lamented that incessant strikes in the nation’s citadel of learning was beginning to have an adverse effect on the international image of Nigerian products.
Speaking at the sideline of the matriculation ceremony for 190 students of Post Graduate Studies, the VC said it is high time the two parties adopted new tactics in resolving whatever differences in the overall interest of the students and the National development.
“Government is trying on its own part. We have so many federal universities, so many state universities to be taken care of by the government, so, for me, there must be an understanding. Government and ASUU must find a way of managing the situation” Fasina admonished
The FUOYE VC spoke against the backdrop of the threats by ASUU to resume strike over an alleged failure of the FG to honour agreements reached with the union.
The postgraduate students were admitted into programmes in the faculty of Agriculture, Arts, Engineering, Science as well as Social Sciences.
He said, “The FG and ASUU should work it out and make sure that we don’t have the strike. The best thing that can happen to this country is for both of them to make sure that the strike is averted in the interest of the students, Nigerians and education as a whole. They are talking and by God’s grace, the strike will be averted.
“Strike has never given us a good name because it affects the quality of training in this country. People overseas are beginning to look at our students who are coming for masters and Phd whether they are actually there because of these strikes. The strike has never done anything good to anybody.
“Government can talk with stakeholders and allow universities to bring out ideas that can stabilize the system so that everything will work well. I think government and ASUU should find a middle way to resolve matters so that the students will not suffer unnecessarily and for us to have a stable calendar.
“People should think outside the box to get problems solved. I think that is what government and ASUU should do so that we don’t go back to Egypt.
“There are better ways for us as academicians to handle the issue before going on strike. I don’t think we ever heard of lecturers going on strike overseas and I think government too on their own part should also make sure that the strike is averted by providing an appropriately enabling environment,” the VC said.
Admonishing the postgraduate students the VC said “this matriculation ceremony will formally confer on you the studentship status of the great university after you have taken the ” matriculation oath “It is then expected of you to display attitudes and characters that will showcase this University positively. ” he added.
Fasina who appealed to the government and the ASUU to work it out and ensure yet another strike was averted, canvassed a middle way to resolve all issues without necessarily resorting to industrial action in the interest of the students and nation’s development.
In his remarks the Dean, SPGS, Prof Raphael Omolehin advised the post-graduate students to aspire to become good researchers, saying, “When you are good researchers, you will be able to move on well with your academic programme without delay and finish your thesis or dissertation”.
Omolehin, who said his vision was to improve the standard of post-graduate training in FUOYE to the world’s best, said that the SPGS would strive to increase students enrolment through the incorporation of other eligible programmes and departments.l