Just hours after the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU called off its six-month-old strike, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), yesterday threatened to embark on a nationwide strike should the federal government implement the report by the committee on the Needs Assessment of Nigerian Public Universities.
Speaking in Ilorin, Kwara State, at a public lecture organised on the report at the University of Ilorin, the National Vice-President of SSANU, Alfred Jimoh, said the needs assessment report contained recommendations that non-teaching staff in public universities should be downsized.
“The Professor Mahmud-led committee also suggested that a situation whereby the number of non-teaching staff is more than the teaching staff in Nigerian universities is an aberration,” he said.
Jimoh, who said the report which the committee constituted without a member of non-teaching staff “could not have done anything better than to exhibit age-long disdain for the non-teaching staff in the system as exemplified in the report, thereby putting non-teaching staff jobs on the line.
“Suffice it to inform that the unemployment market in Nigeria may be witnessing another increase if the federal and state governments are deceived into laying off the non-teaching staff in Nigerian universities under the guise of ‘halting artificial growth in the system.
“It is a norm to have more non-teaching staff in the university than teaching staff,” Jimoh said, adding that there could not be any meaningful academic activity such as qualitative teaching and research as contained in the nature of job and services provided by non-teaching staff.”
The non-teaching staff unions (NAAT, NASU, SSANU) also said the report of the committee on Needs Assessment of Nigerian Public Universities should be dismissed and rejected, as they refrained their members from associating with any parts thereof.