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'Stop dragging politics into ASUU'

07 December 2013, 08:04

Abuja - The Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, on Friday called on the leadership of the All Progressive Congress (APC) not to politicise the current strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Maku said that rather than criticise the government for allegedly failing to address the issues raised by the striking lecturers, the party should come out with better ways of ending the dispute.

Maku, who was critical of the party’s position on the strike, said that no previous government had invested more money in education than the President Goodluck Jonathan administration had done in the past three years.

"My advice to APC is to bring a new policy argument that will be better than what we have at the moment rather than dragging politics into everything.

"Politicians aspiring to run for elective position should offer us alternative policies and not to undermine our efforts.

"I stand to be challenged, no government in the history of this country has put more money into education than the current government," he said.

The minister dismissed claims that the leadership of ASUU collected money from opposition politicians to go on with the strike, saying that the lecturers were persons of integrity that could not be bought.

According to him, the lecturers went on strike with the conviction to address the lingering problems of underfunding in the education sector.

He appealed to the union to consider government’s offer and end the strike in the interest of students and the development of the education sector.

Answering a question on late former South African president Nelson Mandela, Maku said African leaders should learn from his humility, dedication and simple life style.

He said that Mandela, who died on Thursday at 95, would be missed for his love for Africa and the pursuit of peace and development of the continent.

Mandela died on Dec. 5 after a protracted illness.



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