No fewer than 500,000 Nigerian children who desire public university education are rejected annually due to paucity of funds which has led to decayed infrastructure and reduced manpower.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities said in a release in Ibadan on Sunday and signed by the Chairman, University of Ibadan Chapter of the union, Prof. Deji Omole said unless urgent steps are taken to cater to the needs of children of the Nigerian masses, many of them would fight back with crime.
It accused the All Progressives Congress led government of a deliberate plan to starve public education with funds in order to deny Nigerian youths the right to know and challenge misrule.
Omole lamented that the sacrifices of understaffed and underpaid Nigerian academia would be futile if President Buhari did not increase funding for education.
He cited the University of Ibadan as an example of an institution presently groaning due to paucity of funds, insufficient staff, decayed infrastructure and bad laboratories.
According to the ASUU chief, education was not the priority of the Buhari government.
“The APC government’s failure to fund education is a design to kill public universities. University of Ibadan is groaning terribly due to paucity of funds.
“Retired academics cannot be replaced because government deliberately refused to make budgetary provision for growth and development.
“This crisis has led to the staff on ground being overworked leading to early deaths of many of our colleagues.
“Education is not the priority of this government. Due to paucity of funds, many universities including University of Ibadan, the nation’s premier university, cannot admit many qualified candidates into the universities.
“This is dangerous to the society as the rejected qualified and brilliant candidates may eventually take to crimes because the country has rejected them. The policy is not only wicked but criminal,” ASUU lamented.