ERC Joins NANS #EndASUUStrike Protest
Buhari government must meet ASUU demanDS
On Tuesday September 19, members of the Education Rights Campaign (ERC) and the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM) joined other Nigerian students at a protest organized by the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) in Lagos as part of the campaign to place demand on the government to #EndASUUStrike. The protest took place at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport and led to disruption of flights.
Since its convention last month which produced two factional leaderships, the NANS faction led by Usman Umar Barambu has commenced a national campaign to reopen the campuses while correctly placing the blame for the strike on the Federal Government and asking it to meet the demands of ASUU. For us, the action is commendable, even though belated. The ERC stands in full solidarity with NANS in the campaign to ensure the government meets ASUU demands so that campuses can be reopened.
However, so far, the movement is being built top-down and around a number of activists and student leaders but with little or no democratic involvement of the mass of students. To this extent, we urge the NANS leadership to organize State-level (JCC) and Zonal students congresses in order to use this to mobilize the mass of students to get involved. This step would be required to be taken before the proposed “National shutdown of Abuja” sometimes next month.
We, of the Education Rights Campaign (ERC), are convinced that only a sustained struggle can get the government to act responsibly and re-open our universities. We maintain that there is no other solution to the incessant strike of academic and non-academic staff of the universities than for the government to fund education adequately and ensure the democratic administration of the universities.
The protest was also used to stress again that the attempt by the government to intimidate the striking workers and turn the citizens against them must be condemned by people of good conscience.
Copies of the leaflet of the ERC were shared, and many of the parents and other citizens agreed with the positions of the ERC.