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Bayelsa varsity demands ministers’ sacking over half-pay



Niger Delta University

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, Niger Delta University chapter, on Monday, staged a peaceful solidarity protest in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, against what it described as the casualisation of university lecturers and bastardisation of tertiary education in Nigeria by the government.

The union demanded the sacking of the Ministers of Education, Adamu Adamu; Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige; and Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, over alleged poor performance in office.

The march was preceded by a special congress of the ASUU-NDU held at the Law Faculty needed the university, which was attended in solidarity by representatives of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria, Civil Liberties Organisation, National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, students, among other activists.

Speaking during the protest, the Chairman of ASUU-NDU, Prof. Tonbara Kingdom, condemned the payment of half salaries to lecturers in federal universities.

According to him, the federal and state governments are systematically killing public universities with inadequate funding and proliferation of institutions to create the condition for private universities to thrive and deny the children of the poor access to university education.

Kingdom, who led the protest, said, “This rally is part of ASUU national struggle. The children of the poor must attend universities. A people united cannot be divided.

“We will never surrender. A people united cannot be defeated. We will not go back, we are going forward. The Federal Government should look for a way to solve this problem. The sacking of (Chris) Ngige and the Minister of Labour is necessary. They must go. If they cannot solve this problem, they must go. The Minister of Finance must go.

“How can the Accountant-General take instruction from the Minister of Labour and pay our colleagues half salaries? It is unacceptable. So, ASUU-NDU is insisting, pay them their money. We are not casuals, and we will not accept half-pay. Solidarity forever.”

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