By Umar Audu
Ahmad Isah, the host of a popular radio show, Brekete Family, has begun fundraiser to end the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.
ASUU had been on strike since February 14 over the Federal Government’s inability to honour the 2009 agreement.
The industrial action has crippled academic activities in government universities across the country.
In an effort to salvage the situation, Mr Isah, popularly known as Ordinary President, created a bank account for the crowdfunding, aimed at raising the N18billion demanded by the university lecturers’ union to end the strike.
Publishing the account details on his Twitter handle, the radio host called on Nigerians to “make a difference” by donating to end the ASUU strike.
He said: “This #ASUU intervention donation shall determine how we can turn things around in this country. Your N50, N100, N200, N300, or N500 – N1billion, will make a difference.
“No be a shameful thing to support your mama and we support the federal government of Nigeria,” he tweeted in pidgin.
“President Muhammadu Buhari, this is one of your patriotic citizens saying that there is hunger in our Country. Nigerians are suffering.
“Some of the people that surround you are not telling you the truth. Please, hear us, my President #ASUU is still on strike.”
The move elicited reactions on Twitter, making it one of the top trends in the early hours of Thursday.
While many netizens commended his efforts, others wondered what would be the responsibility of the government if citizens would have to solve the problem of education by themselves.
A Twitter user @Aubameyang7 said; “If citizens contribute to solving such problems, why then do we need a government?
“This isn’t sustainable in the long run. Maybe we should ask Tinubu, Ganduje, Atiku, Accountant general of the Federation and Even the Rivers state account to help us out here. They can fund ASUU.”
Another user, @chrysladoftwear, said “This doesn’t sound okay to me at all. In a country where one person steals over 80billion.
“EFCC recovers money on a daily basis yet we dont know what the money recovered is being used for. The strike has started already so we are ready to wait till 2023.”
While describing the move as a starting point for salvaging the dwindling education situation, a user, @blazynjde, said this: “might just be the beginning of privatization of federal universities, they no longer want to fund the universities.
“The government no longer value education in this country, what happened to the government primary & secondary schools is about to extend to tertiary institutions.”
On his part, @kingsle96960005, hoped that the government would accept Mr Isah’s gesture in good heart.
He said: “I hope the government will accept this wonderful work you are doing sir, because I’m thinking that government will not appreciate it they will say that money is not the problem, that the problem is that ASUU didn’t agree with their policy, that is what I’m thinking ooooo.”