Lecturers Now Taxi Drivers, Farmers – ASUU Fires FG, NASS Members

December 14, 2021
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According to the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the Federal Government has relegated educators to the roles of farmers and taxi drivers.

The lecturers chastised members of the National Assembly for allegedly “making between N1.5 million and N1.3 million monthly” to the detriment of professors, who, he claimed, took home N416, 000 each month.

The union also stated that it will not call off its scheduled strike unless the government agrees to its demands.

Adelaja Odukoya, the Lagos Zone Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, stated this to journalists on Tuesday at the end of the union’s zonal meeting held at the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

Odukoya, backed by the zone’s branch chairmen, lambasted Senators and House of Representatives members for receiving ‘giant pay,’ while also claiming that academic members are “being impoverished by the Federal Government.”

By refusing to implement the Memorandum of Action (MoA) negotiated with the union in 2020, he accused the Federal Government of purposefully impoverishing university professors.

He bemoaned ASUU members’ “poor compensation,” lamenting how the “federal government has converted lecturers into farmers and taxi drivers.”

Odukoya accused the FG of weaponizing poverty against members of the academic community, citing Senate President Ahmad Lawan’s disclosure of the parliamentarians’ monthly and operational revenues.

Nigerian academics, according to the don, are the “least paid in the world,” calling it a disgrace to the education industry and the country.

Reading from the statement entitled: “Our pay cannot take us home: End poverty wage now”, Odukoya said, “We have always insisted that the cost of governance in this country is too high and nobody is doing anything about it and to increase the salary of lecturers is now a problem for the government”.

“This is happening against the background of the public admission by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan only yesterday that a Senator earns N1.5 million while a member of the House of Representatives earns N1.3m per month.

“It will shock you to know that for most of us outside Lagos, we engage in farming to survive, while some of us in Lagos engage in ‘kabukabu’ (taxi driving) and other menial jobs because our salary can no longer take us home.

“Regrettably, with 9 days to the one year anniversary of our suspension of our last strike and signing of the 2020 MoA (Memorandum of Actions), the government has adamantly and most shamefully refused, failed and neglected to do what was freely agreed to between us.

“It is clear that the Federal government by its lamentable actions and condemnable inactions is adding fuel to an already combustible situation.”

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