#BounceExclusive: Counting The Cost Of ASUU's Sit-At-Home Order
It's officially 6 days since the Academic Staff Union of Universities began its total and indefinite strike.
Students have been forced to abandon their academic activities at a time most of them were inching closer to the examination halls.
Parents are worried that their children's future are being toiled with by politicians whose children school abroad.
However, there are other silent causalities whose murmuring were heard by Bounce News on a visit to the University of Lagos.
The normally busy Unilag looked stack naked with no one rushing anywhere and a few students with long faces hanging around classrooms and hostels.
They appear to be waiting for Goddot!
The book sellers, the business centre operators, the photographers, the food sellers, the cab and bus operators, even ice cream vendors are all lamenting that the strike is beginning to take its toll on them and their dependents.
And their prayer point is just but one, “may the Federal Government of Nigeria and ASUU reach a compromise soon so the strike can end once and for all.”
Linus Nwosu, a bookshop owner on campus told Bounce News that it is no longer business as usual.
“There is no business. Since morning, I have not sold even one book. I just choose to be opening the shop just to stay away from the idleness of staying at home and being unable to meet the needs of my family.” Nwosu lamented.
One of the photocopier operator on campus, who identified himself has Kayode Olusegun said the drop-in demand for services was severe this week as more students are beginning to leave the school premises.
“The manner the Federal Government is handling the crisis does not give us hope that there is an end in sight. The government and ASUU should please come to an understanding and end this strike, our businesses and source of livelihood are already being affected”, Olusegun appealed.
For Chijoke an Ice Cream vendor, business is practically non-existing.
He said: “The market that is not enough for me to sell in one day is now spilling into two-three days”
Also, the usual queues for buses and cabs at peak periods on the UNILAG campus have disappeared as Bounce News observed.
One of the bus drivers simply referred to as Baba Aliyu appealed to all parties to resolve whatever differences they have.
“We are not happy with was is going on, they should stop toiling with the future of our children,” he appealed.
An attempt by Bounce News to get updates from the UNILAG ASUU executives was quite unsuccessful as they were said to be locked in a crucial meeting.
Presently, ASUU, has accused the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, of engaging in cheap blackmail over the ongoing strike.
This accusation was made by the President of the union, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, in a bulletin on the strike, where he asked members of the union to disregard the comment by the minister who described their action as illegal.
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