ASUU Strike: We Won't Let APC, PDP Hold Presidential Primaries In Nigeria - NANS Warns - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE



Sunday, May 1, 2022

ASUU Strike: We Won't Let APC, PDP Hold Presidential Primaries In Nigeria - NANS Warns


The Daily Crucible | Sunday, May 1, 2022

By Jane Okafor, Abuja

The National Association of Nigerian Students on Sunday declared that no political party will be allowed to hold a convention or primaries for the purpose of selecting a presidential candidate in Abuja or elsewhere.

NANS President, Sunday Asefon, made this known in a release to newsmen.

The major opposition Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) had picked Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory(FCT) for its planned May Convention to select its presidential candidate among its 15 aspirants from all over the country, including its main frontline contender and former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. 

The ruling All Progressives Congress(APC) is also contemplating using Abuja as venue  for its presidential primary later this month where APC National leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo are main contenders.

From South -East geopolitical zone alone, 
some of the contenders for the presidency are Anyim Pius Anyim and Dave Umahi (Ebonyi State), Peter Obi, Chris Ngige and Kingsley Muoghalu (Anambra State), Orji Uzor Kalu and Sam Ohuabunwa (Abia State), Rochas Okorocha (Imo State), Chris Baywood of Baywood Foundation (Enugu).

While Kalu, Umahi and Okorocha are members of the ruling All Progressives Congress, the likes of Anyim, Ohuabunwa and Obi are in the main opposition PDP. Kingsley Moghalu is expected to run on the platform of African Democratic Congress (ADC).

But NANS, in its statement said the nation's registered political parties would not be allowed to hold primaries ahead of the 2023 presidential election unless they first end the strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities since February 14, 2022.

The apex students’ Union Government also expressed anger that those saddled to ensure the smooth running of the education sector including Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba; and Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige; have picked up the outrageous N100m presidential forms of the ruling APC.
In the statement titled, ‘End ASUU Strike Or Forget Political Activities In Abuja’, the NANS president said, “We have also in the past weeks seen those saddled with great responsibility in the education sector and those saddled with responsibilities of resolving labour crises declaring interest to contest for the seat of the President come 2023.

“We are surprised by their effrontery and total disrespect to the Nigerian people for having the courage to even mute the idea of contesting talkless of picking up the N100m presidential form while students languish at home because of their collective failures.

“Politicians have shown no concern to the plight of the students but are only busy in their selfish and inordinate ambitions to become the next President.

 “Let me say without mincing words, the two major political parties should forget any political gathering in Abuja or elsewhere except there is a solution to the lingering ASUU strike.

“We will frustrate all the activities leading to the selection of party candidates if we remain on strike. We also want to advise the government and the politicians who are busy campaigning to be President to either resolve the ASUU crises or give direct orders to the security operatives to shoot us at the site during party conventions to select a presidential candidate. If we remain on strike, they should just forget it.”

ASUU, on March 14, at the expiration of its four-week warning strike which it declared on Monday, February 14, had extended the industrial action by two months.

The union led by Professor Emmanuel Osodeke said it made the decision to extend the strike so as to give the Federal Government and its agencies enough time to meet the lingering demands of the union.

The union had embarked on a nine-month strike in 2020 before it was called off in December of that year.


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