AS the protracted strike by the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP)seem to have no end in sight, the angry students of the institutions under the aegis of National Association Polytechnic Students (NAPS), yesterday, stormed the Federal Ministry of Education protesting what they called ‘federal government’s poor’ handling of the issue.
The students who came out in their numbers called for the immediate removal of the Supervising Minister of Education, Nyesom Wike whom they accused of not being capable of resolving the crises.
The students who came out with various placards which such inscriptions like: “Wike Must Go”, “Government is Insensitive”, “We are tired of being neglected’ among others were however dispersed by Policemen who were on ground to ensure law and order.
National President of NAPS, Comrade Sunday Ogbonnaya, while speaking to journalists, said, “ASUP’s demands have the backing of the student body particularly with regard to ending the discrimination of HND holders and the call for better funding for the polytechnics.
“The last meeting between ASUP and the Minister was inconclusive. ASUP initially had 13 demands, then streamlined them into four. Having entered into agreements with the union, it is unfair for the government to fail to yield to the agreement. But we also appealed to ASUP at the meeting with the Minister, if they are canvassing for what is theirs; they should not use students as negotiation tools in getting what they want.
“Few days after that meeting, ASUP met and said the strike continues and for various reasons, we believe in the struggle of ASUP. We are tired of staying at home. We are totally in support of the 13 demands of the union and we are ready to give them all necessary support to make sure that those demands are met. We believe in dialogue, this protest would have come long ago but we decided to wait. But we want them to go back to work while negotiations continue.
“Let it be known to the public that what they are fighting for is in the interest of the general public”.