The Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools(ASUSS), has expressed concern over the incessant killings, kidnappings and harassment of teachers and students across the country, describing such situations as a serious threat to the nation’s educational development.
According to the Union, these sordid scenarios are affecting the teachers’ productivity adversely and making enrollment in schools dropped.
The group however said, as terrible as the situations seem to be, ASUSS lauded the governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai, for employing 7,600 teachers, commending Kano and Adamawa, for legislating on extension members’ retirement to 65 years.
The ASUSS’ CWC said this in a communique issued after its meeting in Kaduna on Wednesday and made available to newsmen by its National President, Com. Samuel Omaji and Secretary-General, Com. Sola Adigun, who doubles as the Chairman of ASUSS in Ekiti State.
The communique reads: “We appreciate the governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, for the recruitment of 7,600 teachers into its 9,000 Secondary School Tutors. This is laudable as it is geared towards quality and functional education.
“We commend the government of Kano State for redeploying 11,000 trained teachers in its MDAs to schools to boost teaching and learning. The commendations also go to Oyo, Lagos and Delta States, for the up-to-date promotion of teachers”.
In spite of the above incentives to teaching, ASUSS seriously frowned at the insecurity across the country, particularly, incessant attacks on schools, leading to the killing and kidnapping of teachers and students for ransoms.
“That the prevailing insecurity transcends ethnicity and politics; and for the umpteenth time, the union calls on governments at all levels to be sincere in handling security issues as it is their fundamental responsibility”.
“ASUSS vehemently frowns at the recent harassment of teachers by students and parents; case studies were Plateau State where a student stabbed a teacher to death and Ekiti State where a police officer came to his child’s school with a team of three other policemen to harass the school principal and the teachers, while the police authority has refused to act on ASUSS complaints”.
It added further that its members are incurably committed to its objectives of raising future leaders and shall vigorously pursue them for meaningful and robust development of education in Nigeria.
ASUSS urged the National Assembly to expedite action on the bills to energise better welfare packages for teachers, saying dilly-dallying on the passage doesn’t correlate with the position maintained by President Muhammadu Buhari.
It stated: “That other state government should emulate Kano and Adamawa states that have gone ahead to legislate on elongation of service for their teachers with immediate implementation of same.
“That the leadership of the union is ready to organize all Secondary schools, tutors, to scientifically pursue better welfare, improved terms and conditions of services, to enhance the dignity of members”.
ASUSS called on all other states that have allegedly denied teachers their privileges, rights and regular emoluments to do the right thing to alleviate the burdens and pains on members.