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Monday, 1 June 2015

ASUU STRIKE: Hundreds join hunger strike in bid to end strike

The Board and members of the Human Rights Writers’ Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) have decided to join the hunger strike about to be embarked upon by the group’s National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, to force an end to the over three months old industrial action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Speaking on phone with News Express this afternoon, Onwubiko disclosed that he has received assurances from the 250 financial members of HURIWA to join the hunger strike.

“We also expect some of our over 1,000 Facebook members to join the hunger strike, as well as our representatives in the United Kingdom, Austria and Germany,” he stated.

Meanwhile, in a statement signed by Onwubiko and issued from the group’s headquarters in Abuja, “HURIWA directed all her members world-wide to voluntarily embark on hunger strike on Tuesday and Wednesday if their individual health conditions permit.”

According to Onwubiko, “At our board meeting this morning, I briefed them about the necessity of embarking on a physical but non-violent civil disobedience measure to call on President Jonathan to take up effective and urgent measures to reopen public universities and we agreed to urge our members, supporters, admirers and lovers of Nigeria’s educational system to join us in solidarity by hunger striking between Tuesday and Wednesday of next week. We also agreed to serve public notice through this press statement to President Jonathan and the Education ministry including ASUU about our resolve.

“Our main reason for this hunger strike is to protest the lackadaisical and near-reckless approach by both Nigerian government and officials of Academic Staff Union of Universities to end the four months old strike to enable children of the very poor Nigerians to return to public universities. We also want ASUU to adopt peer review mechanism to fish out her members that are perpetually in the devilish habit of demanding sex-for-marks from students and/or constantly extorting students through unauthorized sale of poorly written handouts and lecture papers.”
HURIWA recalled that ASUU embarked on the industrial action following failure of federal government to discharge her contractual obligations signed since 2009 to adequately fund public university system and pay agreed statutory emoluments to the poor remunerated public university teachers.

The rights group said in observing the hunger strike action, individual members are to take measures to ensure that they truly abide by their individual resolution to go on hunger strike even as the group urged them to consult their medical doctors before and after commencement.

17th October, 2013

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