Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, the National President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has stated that the Union has not watered down the initial demands it made at the beginning of the on-going strike.
In an interview with Daily Trust on Wednesday, the don stressed that the strike will only end when government addresses the demands of the lecturers.
There have been various back-and-forth meetings between the presidency and the union since the strike started in November 2018. This has been followed by speculations on a possible end to the protest soon.
However, restating the stance on the union's demands, Ogunyemi stated: "The strike will end when government addresses our minimalist proposal sent to it. We have reduced what we proposed drastically. What we propose now is a far cry from where we started. So, government must address this proposal that we have before it in order to pave way for the suspension of the strike action. Unless it does so, we cannot go back to our members to prevail on them to consider other positions than where we are.
"What we are doing now is that we are making a sacrifice for students to secure their future. We are sacrificing our today so that our children can have public universities that they can be proud of in the future. Those of us who are struggling now, went to public universities and if students are lucky to be in those universities, they should also support us in defending the universities from collapsing.
"The trouble we are making is that we don’t want a situation in which our universities would collapse just like our primary and secondary schools have collapsed. That is the context from which we want people to appreciate the ASUU struggle.”
He also called on well-meaning Nigerians to join the Union in appealing to government to provide positive response to their demands, as it is what is necessary from prevent the collapse of public universities.