The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Thursday vowed to sponsor the “Bring Back Your Children” bill at the National Assembly, following the Federal Government neglect of the Education sector.
ASUU National President, Emmanuel Osodeke, who disclosed this at a one-day ‘State of the Nation Summit’ organised by the Bauchi zone of the Union lamented that the Nigerian leaders have killed education and then look for other countries to send their children to study.
Declaring that ASUU will mobilise Nigerians to march to the National Assembly to demand that the bill be passed for all elected public officers to send their children to Nigerian public schools, Osodeke said he’s sure that if all the children of all these people are in this country, the education sector will not be where it is today.
Speaking on the theme: ‘Nigeria: The State of the Nation,’ held at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University said, “Today, the leaders of this country and those who control our wealth have completely abandoned education. Today, this country is reaping the work of our abandoning education.
“The leaders, after abandoning and killing our education, took their children to school in countries where education is invested in.
“We are going to storm the National Assembly with a Bill which will be titled “bring back your children”.
“We are going to mobilise the students, the NGOs and all of us will storm the National Assembly and we will ensure that that Bill is passed. If you get Nigeria’s resources, then your children must be in Nigerian schools whether it is primary, secondary or tertiary institutions.
“I’m sure if all the children of all these people are in this country, our education will not be where it is today, they will pay attention to it. But they don’t care that your own child goes to a school where there is hardly anything.”
According to him, the insecurity being faced across the country is a result of abandoning education by the leaders, noting that “any country that abandons education is creating insecurity and that’s exactly where we are today.”
He added that “many of our colleagues are now afraid to travel by road. Many people are even afraid to visit their children in schools while some are even afraid to send their children to school because we have gotten to a stage where nobody is safe whether you are going by road, by air, by sea or by train.
“You are also aware that recently, bandits almost derailed a train. If not for God, all those people on board would have been gone. So if they can derail trains and vehicles, then they can also fire at planes. We all need to work hard to change this trajectory, and how do we do that? The first step to take is education.”
The ASUU President said that the situation in some public institutions across the country was very pathetic, lamenting that “we were in a state university in Abuja zone and we saw a room, 12 by 12, with 16 female students who have stoves. In that small room, you have 16 stoves, how would they survive as human beings?
“As I speak to you today, look at your professors here, none of them earns up to $800 monthly but a lecturer will publish a paper meant for his promotion and it will cost him $200. How can we have peace?
“This country is heading towards complete annihilation and we must prevent it and that is why we are here. Our problem has nothing to do with ethnicity, religion or where you are. There are just two classes of Nigerians, those being oppressed and the oppressors; just about 10 per cent oppressing 90 per cent.”
He said that the summit will discuss and come up with resolutions that will ensure that our country is revamped and taken over from “this set of people who have completely ruined this country and are still in the process of ruining it.”