By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
The Vice-Chancellor of Trinity University, Yaba, Lagos, Prof. Charles Ayo, has commended the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) for suspending its nine-month-old strike.
Ayo gave the commendation in an interview with our correspondent in Wednesday in Abeokuta, Ogun.
He recalls that ASUU had, on March 23, embarked on industrial action over the backlog of unfulfilled agreements between it and the Federal Government.
He also said, that ASUU National Chairman, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, had, on Wednesday in Abuja, announced the suspension of the strike at a news briefing, following the decision reached at the union’s National Executive Council meeting on Tuesday.
The vice-chancellor, who described the prolonged strike as unfortunate, said while many female university students had got impregnated, some of their male counterparts had been involved in one form of crime or the other.
He said that the suspension of the strike by ASUU was a welcome development, considering the percentage of students in public universities.
Ayo also applauded the private universities for continuing their own normal academic activities in spite of the ASUU-federal government face-off which led to the prolonged strike.
He, however, said that Nigerians should not be too quick to condemn ASUU, stressing that it had genuine reasons for embarking on the strike.
According to him, the nation’s universities need quality research, well-equipped laboratories and functional teaching facilities that would enhance their good ranking in the comity of universities across the world.
The vice-chancellor added that this would also make university graduates employable in the labour market.
“Without quality education, there can never be national development.
“It is high time the federal government found alternative means of dispute resolution and adopted a sustainable approach in order to prevent frequent industrial action by the union,” he said.