Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State has attributed the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to the massive looting of public funds by politicians and civil servants alike.
The governor, who argued that there is no country in the world where stealing of public funds is not taking place, however, said if people in leadership positions steal less, there would be enough money to make education free in the country.
Speaking yesterday at the first convention and election of Bayero University Kano Alumni Association (BUKAA) executives in Kano, Gov. Aliyu said, “There is no country that stealing is not taking place. But if we steal less, we will be able to provide free education to our teeming populace, from nursery to higher institution level”.
He added, “But we allowed things to deteriorate to a situation where we don’t actually know how much money is coming into the country, as what is being declared is not the actual amount. That is why we have a problem that our lecturers have to be on strike for more than five months”.
According to the governor, there is nowhere in the world where academic activities are disrupted as a result of strike by varsity lecturers, except in Nigeria.
He, therefore, urged Nigerian university alumni to assist their alma maters by establishing a special endowment fund to enable the universities have sufficient funds to pay staff salaries and allowances to avert strikes in the future.