Protesters block entrance to NASS, Education Ministry over VCs’ removal

A cross section of a civil society group members protesting against sacking of 13 federal university vice chancellors in Abuja… yesterday. PHOTO LADIDI LUCY ELUKPO
A cross section of a civil society group members protesting against sacking of 13 federal university vice chancellors in Abuja… yesterday. PHOTO LADIDI LUCY ELUKPO

MEMBERS of a civil rights organisation, Coalition of Civil Society Groups(CCSG) yesterday, blocked entrance to the National Assembly and Ministry of Education in Abuja protesting against the sacking of some Vice-Chancellors (VCs) of Nigerian universities, which they described as illegal.

The chairman of the coalition, Bassey-Williams Etuk, called on President Muhammdu Buhari to relieve the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, of his appointment “because he knows nothing.”

According to him, the sacking of the VCs and their replacement with people mostly from the north violated the federal character principle.

“Six professors were taken from Bayero University, Kano as replacement… Haba! Why? “, one of their placards reads.

Their chants included: “Adamu must go”, “Reinstate sacked VCs now” and “Nigeria needs a better administrator in the Education Ministry”, among others.

A petition to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki and Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, was received on their behalf by the National Assembly Deputy Sergeant-At-Arms, Dennis Maaji.

The group gave the Education Minister 48 hours to reverse the sack and resign his appointment “because he doesn’t seem to understand the workings of University system and administration.”

Etuk said the coalition would be heading to court to stop the sack as the tenure of five of the sacked VCs were yet to expire.

The protesters also barricaded the Federal Ministry of Education, located at Federal Secretariat, Abuja.

He said: “The minister does not have any right to call for the sack of 13 vice chancellors nine of whose tenure was to expire this last Monday. As for four, their tenure is still running; some have two years, some have one year and six months.

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