January 5, 2017

ASUU lobbies NASS to increase education budget

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

ABUJA— ACADEMIC Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has started lobbying the National Assembly for an increase of the 2017 budgetary allocation to education sector.

The union has also expressed shock that the Federal Government only budgeted five percent to education and also reneged on the promise to the union that budgetary allocation to education will improve in 2017 fiscal year.

National President of ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, who expressed their disappointment in a telephone interview with Vanguard in Abuja, yesterday, said ASUU was still analysing the budget and would come out with a comprehensive report to enable it take a position on the issue.

Ogunyemi said: “We are still analysing the budget, but what I can say at a preliminary level now is that we are disappointed. We are shocked that the government did not keep to its promise to us.

“What we have seen so far, I think it is about five per cent and it has been sliding since 2014 when it was 12; 2015, it came to 11 and 2016 it came to eight. If it is coming to five percent now, I think we will have problem with that, and at the appropriate time, we will make a comprehensive report, especially because we are engaging the National Assembly.

“At present, we have some issues that we have been tracking and discussing. So if they assured us, we have to wait until they do their work on it before we make a comprehensive report. But we have told them in clear terms that we are disappointed.”

On what is going to be the consequence of the alleged poor budgetary allocation to the education sector, the ASUU boss said: “Certainly, you know that the value of naira has gone down, we protested in November and went on a warning strike because we found out that education has not been given its due pride of place.”