The union joins other unions to condemn the lackadaisical attitude of the Federal Government towards finding a lasting solution to the crisis.
The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) says it will join the protest planned by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) over the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
SaharaReporters had reported that the Nigerian university lecturers embarked the strike action to force the government to implement an agreement it had with the lecturers’ union, ASUU, in 2009.
A four-week warning strike was first declared on February 14, by ASUU’s leadership. Thereafter, it was further extended until later became an indefinite strike action.
There have been several protests by Nigerian students but the Federal Government has said it lacks the financial resources to implement the agreement which will cost it N200 billion.
Meanwhile, the President of the NLC, Comrade Ayuba Wabba on July 1, said that the NLC would embark on a nationwide protest if the strike persists.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday asked the lecturers to return to the classrooms, appealing to them to think about the consequences of the strike on the students and the security of the country.
But NUPENG in a statement on Wednesday condemned the attitude of the government towards finding a lasting solution to the incessant strike.
It however pledged the support of its members, adding that “the rank-and-file members of NUPENG align with the NLC’s position on protest against the unfortunate situation in the tertiary education sector and will not hesitate to join in the proposed nationwide strike on the matter.”
NUPENG in the statement signed by its President and Secretary General, Williams Akporeha and Afolabi Olawale, respectively, expressed concern over the strike which has crippled activities in the nation's public universities.
“NUPENG demands together with other Trade Unions, that the Federal Government must immediately address and resolve all demands of ASUU, NASU and SSANU without any further delay to avert national solidarity actions from our members across the Country,” parts of the statement read.
“The union joins other unions to condemn the lackadaisical attitude of the Federal Government towards finding a lasting solution to the crisis.
“We are deeply worried that the strike has left thousands of university students stranded and idle, making some of them susceptible to go into various social vices and crimes, thus truncating what otherwise should have been wonderful assets and blessings to our great nation and humanity.”
It accused the government of insensitivity to the plight of Nigerian parents and students who have been thrown into idleness since the commencement of the strike.
NUPENG further added: “This also, without doubt, shows the insensitivity of the current administration towards promoting and projecting good and quality education.
“We are seriously concerned that instead of addressing the nagging issues in the educational sector, the unscrupulous politicians are busy campaigning and wasting resources over 2023 general elections.”