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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has called on the government to pay more attention to education by making it a priority area/sector.
This call was made by the President of Union, Prof. Ogunyemi, during an interview with newsmen in Awka, the capital of Anambra state. He said Nigeria started democracy 20 years ago, and successive administration since then had not made education a high priority area.
“Look at our budgets for education in the last five years at national; we have not gone beyond eight per cent such that in 2018, the sector was given seven per cent which was a far cry from what we need,” he said.
“Though we say that the Federal Government was not doing much, the state governments are even the worst culprits. The governors prefer awarding contracts in primaries and secondary schools rather than to pay counterpart fund to enable them access Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) funds.”
“In 2017, a total of 17 states could not access their fund piling up in UBEC because they couldn’t pay their counterpart fund,”
Prof. Ogunyemi advised the government to look into the educational system and tackle the mountain of challenges facing the sector such as underfunding, poor infrastructure among others.
“During the last strike, we embarked on, FG assured ASUU that it will pay N25 billion out of the whole lot Government was supposed to pay to the universities. Since February 17, that we entered the agreement with the government and they said in two weeks time, this is three months now, nothing has happened”