The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, has blamed a previous administration for the continuous strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
Although Adamu was not specific on which administration he was referring to, he said that that government shouldn’t have entered into an agreement with ASUU to pay them N1.3trilion when it knew it couldn’t pay it.
He said this while answering a question asked him by a Corp Member on the persistent ASUU strike, during a Town Hall meeting on security issues tagged ‘Engaging the Youth and Communities’ at the Multi-Purpose Indoor Sports Hall Complex Bauchi on Monday which was organized by the State government at the instance of the federal government.
He said the insolvable problem that had resulted in incessant strikes by the ASUU was that ‘a government in this country went and sat down with ASUU and agreed on some conditions that it would pay universities N1.3 trillion’.
“I do believe that while they were signing that agreement, they knew that it is not possible for them to implement it. There is just nowhere N1.3trn will come out from.
“I think the basic problem between the ASUU side and the government side has been deciding on what to do about this N1.3 trillion. If a government appends its signature to an agreement, it is an agreement,” he said.
The Education Minister said that the government was not happy that the strike was still on promising, however, that an agreement would soon be reached by the government and ASUU.
“We are not happy that our campuses are closed, we are not happy that the calendar of schools has been disrupted. But the fault is the government that signed to do what it knew it could not do.
“But I assure you that we are on the verge of reaching an agreement and very, very soon, we will reach an agreement with them.”
Also responding to a question raised by a teacher, Adamu said the President has pledged to be paying anyone who intends to be trained as a teacher immediately after secondary school.
He said: “There is a pension scheme exclusively for teachers. All teachers’ children will be taught free in school. They won’t pay a single Kobo in the course of training their children.
“The government also approved special allowances for rural postings, like hardship allowance.”