It is over a month since the Academic Staff Unions of Universities (ASUU) have been on strike over the abject neglect of education in Nigeria by the Federal Government. Despite the different excuses, and face-saving declarations by the Jonathan-led government, it is crystal clear that the kleptomaniacs and charlatans in government are not interested in promoting public education.
The NEEDS Assessments report; the Okojie NUC fraud; and the lack of will and sincerity to implement the ASUU 2009 Agreement’ have all shown that the states and federal government hate public education with great passion and action. Their children and relatives are either in private schools or flown abroad!
Nigerian students, workers, and all citizens that are concerned about public education now know the whole truth. The Federal government and states hate to see the teeming masses get education despite their open condemnations of the negative outputs of bad education in Nigeria, i.e.- Boko Haram; destitution, “thuggery”, and prostitutes in Lagos, Abuja and other cities; and the massive underdevelopment of society. This is why they all underfund education and place high fees in public schools!
In short, the only way to get the Nigerian ruling class to fund education is MASS PROTEST!!
The Coalition of Left and Progressive Students (CLAPS) therefore salutes Nigerian students and their unions, who have demonstrated massively on the streets of Lagos, Ibadan, Owerri, Osogbo, Akure, and Abakaliki. We are happy that they have ignored and shouted down the reactionaries and Abuja jobbers, dominating the NANS Exco, who in their usual crude and morally criminal manners have declared against the ongoing strike.
CLAPS further calls on all students to join the August 13 Mega Protests under the leadership of the Joint Action Front (JAF) and NANS Zone D in LAGOS. It is the mother of all protests that should be reciprocated in all the different NANS zones and major cities and towns of Nigeria, with workers and pro-working class organisations.
CLAPS also enjoins all parents to support their wards as we take our destinies into our hand, and also to join us on the streets. We call on all union leaders to massively mobilize, and work with ASUU branches on their campuses.
CLAPS advises the Nigeria police, military, and security forces to steer clear and desist from bringing live ammunitions to the barricade. The wicked and barbaric cases of the Nasarawa and UNIUYO murders are fresh in our memories. THE WORLD IS WATCHING!
CLAPS finally urges all the other zones to emulate the NANS Zone D, and organize to demand for better education for the Nigerian people.
On August 13, all roads lead to the streets of Lagos as We the Students, Youth, and People demand:
• Immediate implementation, to the fullest of the: ASUU, NASU, SSANU agreements reached with the FGN in 2009, as well as the terms of resolution of the recent ASUP strike.
• An end to the victimization of Students’ Unions and activists on all campuses.
• All FG security and anti-poor forces to hands-off the Nigeria students’ movement now!
• Judicial and public probe of the murders of Nigerian students in Nasarawa State University, Lafia and UNIUYO by the security forces.
• Build more quality schools to accommodate the army of admission seekers in the country.
• An end to this barbaric and corrupt system of capitalism, and building on its ruins a working people’s democracy where liberty, equality and solidarity would be the mass culture!
Kunle Wizman Ajayi
Ag. Convener, CLAPS
6th August, 2013