ASUU Strike: Police Disrupts University Lecturers’ Protest

No fewer than 200 policemen stormed the campus of the Ebonyi State University (EBSU) yesterday to prevent lecturers from staging a protest to draw attention to their ongoing strike.

The EBSU chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU) planned a peaceful protest on the streets of Abakaliki, the state capital, but policemen prevented them from going out of the campus.

The police team that stopped the lecturers claimed to be acting on directives from Commissioner of Police Maigari Dikko.

Lecturers have been on strike for almost four months, claiming government has failed to honour agreements it reached with ASUU on proper funding of education in the country.

The policemen, who were armed with AK 47 rifles, tear gas and other anti -riot accessories, closed the gate leading to the College of Agricultural Science, (CAS) campus of the university from where the procession was to take off.

They also denied other members of the public and students who had other reasons for coming to the school entrance into the campus.

Policemen were also drafted to the other three campuses of the institution: the permanent site campus at Ezzamgbo and those at Ishieke and Presco. They claimed to have stopped the procession from going out of the campus to prevent hoodlums from hijacking the protest.

The police were supported by other security agencies including State Security Service, (SSS) operatives.

The EBSU-ASUU members however staged the protest within the campus. They carried placards with the inscriptions: “FG: Save University Education”, “FG: Do not kill University education”, “FG: Agreement is Agreement”, “Poor University education makes every sector fake”, “Nigeria: “Fight poor education”, “FG-ASUU Agreement! FG has reneged, Say no to Beggarcracy,”among others. They sang solidarity songs.

The policemen did a stop-and-search at the gate of the campus and retrieved all the materials and flyers from both the academic and non-academics staff .

Addressing the union members, the Divisional Police Officer in-charge of Ekumenyi Police Station, W.A Mustapha, as ASP, said the directive to stop the rally was given by the Commissioner of Police adding that the application made by the union for the rally was not approved by the commissioner.

He said: “I was directed by the police commissioner to come here and ensure that you restrict your rally within the school premises. There are other citizens of this country going about their normal businesses and we won’t want a situation where their movement will be restricted.”

Ahmed Ogundimu

Ahmed Ogundimu is a Web Designer and Developer, Digital Marketing Expert and SEO Manager. I enjoy finding solutions to problems and sharing same, hence the reason for creating and some other websites I own. I work as a web developer at Sigmanox NG and also as the web administrator/editor at NGScholars. Follow me on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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