Nigerian workers begin 3-day protest against university shutdowns

by | Jul 26, 2022 | World

Hundreds of demonstrators marched towards the seat of government in Lagos on Tuesday, singing anti-government chants on the first day of a planned three-day nationwide demonstration against the continued closure of Nigerian universities.Workers’ unions across several sectors participated in the protest led by the National Labour Congress (NLC), saying the closure of the tertiary institutions affects the quality of life all-round.
“They are wasting the lives of generations and generations. That is why we are demanding government listen to them,” Chinedu Bosha, a 47-year-old protest organiser with the Socialist Democratic Movement, one of the several interest groups that joined the protest, told Al Jazeera in Lagos.
Local media reported protests going on simultaneously in many other states including Kano, Kebbi, Oyo and Osun.
Since February this year, public universities across the country have been closed down due to a dispute about wages with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Strikes, usually over unpaid salaries and lack of funding for the development of public universities, have become a recurring feature in the Nigerian academic sector. This is the 16th strike since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999.
Nigerians have expressed displeasure towards the government about the protracted strike online and offline, alleging the government’s inability to prioritise talks with the lecturers.
Gbenga Olongbojaye, a 25-year-old agriculture student at the University of Ilorin, who join …

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