From Pwanagba Agabus, Jos
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Jos (UniJos) Chapter has commissioned and handed over a 1,000 capacity twin lecture halls to the management of the institution.
The Union said the building cost of the project was N63.2 million and the funds came from the deductions from its members monthly salaries over the years.
Chairperson of ASUU in the University, Dr. Lazarus Maigoro, who made this known at the Naraguta campus where the project was constructed, maintained that “one of the reasons why our Union is on strike today is due to lack of adequate infrastructures for the purpose of quality teaching and learning.”
He stressed that “we decided to embark on this project also because the government has not lived up to its responsibility of funding education. The situation is so bad that it is lecturers in the University who are erroneously perceived as strike mongers and very recalcitrant people that are now using their salaries to build classrooms to assist the government and students while Nigerian public is keeping quiet.”
Maigoro revealed that the Union has also been issuing scholarships to five indigent students every session, adding that they have so far produced 2,000 bottles of hand sanitizers before now as well as 1000 awareness hand bills and shared to organizations at no cost as part of its contributions in the fight against COVID-19.
In his address, the National President of ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, said UniJos ASUU has raised the bar of trade union patriotism in the country.
“UniJos has today added a fresh perspective to addressing the infrastructural deficit on our campuses that would go down in history as unequalled,” he said.
According to him, “We cannot pretend that we have all it takes to solve the problem. Our members are stressed and distressed.
“Our salary structure has stagnated for 11years. And the forceful migration to discredited Integrated Payroll and Personal information system (IPPIS), has further distorted and devalued the take home pay of our members.”
In his remarks, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Sebastian Maimako, represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academics, Prof. Tanko Ishaya, said the survival of public universities in Nigeria has been the shared struggles of ASUU even as he thanked the union for coming to the aid of the institution.