The National Universities Commission (NUC) has announced the projected duration of this current academic session of the Nigerian Federal Universities. It was elongated, firstly, by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in the country which led to the shutdown of many institutions including Nigeria Universities.
This was made known by the Executive Secretary of National Universities Commission, Professor Rasheed Abubakar, during the 2nd Quadrennial National Delegates Conference of Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) held in Abuja on Monday 9th of November, 2020. The conference, which was themed: “Respecting the Sanctity of Collective Bargaining in Democracy,” had in attendance the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFund, Sen. Ahmed Baba Kaita, journalists and other prominent individuals in the educational sector.
“For many of the universities, this current year may extend to about eighteen (18) months…Eight months have been wasted, when the universities reopen, they would have to complete their last year’s program,” he explained.
Professor Abubakar, who expressed his dissatisfaction over the ongoing ASUU strike, also made it known the harms and damages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to the country at large and most especially to the educational system.
“The year 2020 is an unusual year. It is an unusual year for us and for anybody in the world because of the pandemic. And the universities in this country especially the Federal universities, have been some of the most affected by the pandemic.”
He also reiterated the NUC’s efforts to put an end to the strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and he assured the strike would be called off as soon as possible.
“Ten (10) minutes or eleven (11) minutes ago, a crucial negotiation has just started taken place with the Academic Staff Union of Universities. For which, from this place, I will move to labour Ministry to see how we can end this strike hopefully today or tomorrow.”
As foreseen, the meeting was an obvious indication that the strike will not take long anymore before it will be called off.
Recall that, the Federal Universities across the nation were shut down on 23rd of March, 2020 before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
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