The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has described the planned national honour for the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu as an insult to students in the country.
Speaking against the backdrop of the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), NANS spokesperson, Tope Giwa said it is an indication that the Muhammadu Buhari government does not care about the plight of the students.
In his words, “Nigerian students have been taken for a ride.”
Naija News reports that 437 Nigerians have been listed to be conferred with National Awards at a ceremony billed for October 11, 2022, and the Minister of Education is on the list, expected to receive the Commander of the Order of Niger (CON).
It Is An Insult
Reacting, the NANS spokesperson said in a statement that Adamu is to be blamed for the ASUU strike which has lingered for about eight months, hence, there’s no justifiable reason to give him an award.
He added that the step rubbishes the integrity claims of the Buhari administration because the educational sector has completely collapsed under the Minister’s watch.
The statement reads: “It constitutes an insult to the collective intelligence of Nigerian students both home and in the diaspora that the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu under whose nose University students have been home for close to 8 months is to be awarded the National Honours of Commander of the Order of Niger (CON).
“This singular act of the Buhari’s administration is a clear pointer to the fact that Nigerian students have been taken for a ride. And, we see this as the final straw that breaks the back of the camel of Buhari’s much-touted integrity.
“Over the years, successive administrations in the country have shown to the Nigerian people that the National Honours is more of recognition of patronage than recognition of excellence. But, President Buhari has taken a step further to show to the mass of Nigerian students that we are not on the priority list of the administration.
“It is so unfortunate that a country which offered so much in hope and possibilities at independence has today become a land of suffering, insecurity and near hopelessness signposted by youth unemployment and an underfunded educational sector.”
Adamu, Ngige Should Be Sacked
Speaking further, the NANS official held that in a decent society, both Adamu and his counterpart in the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige should have been sacked.
“In a functioning country, both the Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige who shamefully walked out of a meeting with the national leadership of ASUU at the instance of the House of Representatives and his Education counterpart would have been fired before now. But, the reverse is the case as Adamu Adamu under whose watch the educational sector of the country has totally collapsed is to be recognised with a National Honours for a job well done,” he said.
Further describing the plan of the federal government as reckless, the students threatened to mobilize themselves for another protest against the government.