Our lives are under threat – ASUU leaders
The ongoing strike embarked upon by The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has alleged threat to the lives of its leaders nationwide of the festering strike that entered its fourth month.
In a a statement by the chairman of the University of Ibadan chapter of the union, Dr Olusegun Ajiboye, on Sunday, the union said that many of its members have gone underground as a result of the threat.
Ajiboye in the statement titled: 'ASUU strike: Union leaders go underground,' further alleged that the leaders of the union had received some calls warning him about his role in the strike.
He therefore called on the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, to save the lives of ASUU leaders nationwide.
While maintaining a defiance tone, the labour leader said no amount of threat or clampdown on the union members would make them back down from the strike until public education is saved from collapse.
He also alleged that many ASUU leaders had had their phone numbers bugged.
'Apart from the issue of finance, ASUU leaders are now being trailed all over the place. A majority of our union leaders have now gone underground while many have had their telephone lines bugged. Some are now living in fear of their lives,'he said.
Ajiboye, however, noted that ASUU members were not security threat to the nation as against the impression being created by security operatives, adding that as a democratic nation, citizens were guaranteed freedom of association.
He urged the Federal Government to leave its leaders alone and implement the agreements it reached with the union for normalcy to return to university campuses nationwide.
'The position of ASUU is that Nigeria is a democratic country and citizens are guaranteed freedom of association. Members of the union are apprehensive for the lives of their leaders. We urge the government to leave our leaders alone. Our leaders are our servants, we are their principals, they report to us on all matters. Rather than chasing shadows, government is once again called upon to implement the FGN/ASUU 2009 agreement. Only this will bring members to their classrooms,' Ajiboye stated.
Sources informed the Nigerian Tribune that ASUU executives at the University of Ibadan went underground shortly after last Thursday's congress held at the premises of the institution while their phones were switched off.
Similarly, the secretariat of the union has been deserted with new security arrangement alleged to have been put in place.