Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has debunked claims of the union’s opposition to the reopen­ing of the nation’s public universities on January 18.

The President of the Union, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi disclosed this in the ASUU twitter handle @ASUUNGR, on Wednesday.

Ogunyemi who claimed that he was quoted out of context explained that the position of the union was that both the government and university authorities have not complied with the COVID-19 guidelines spelt out for resumption before lectur­ers and students are allowed to return for learning.

It would be recalled that Ogunyemi who quoted as saying that Nigerian Universities are not prepared for the resumption of operations due to lack of preparatory materials to handle the Covid-19 pandemic for students and teachers.

Also, Dr Adeola Egbedokun, the union’s chairman, at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun State, stated that the union cannot afford to mess with the health of its students and warned that no preparatory measures have been put in place to deal with the pandemic.

Egbedokun said, “COVID-19 is very real and this second wave is as real as described. We cannot afford to toy with our health and the health of our dear students in the name of resumption, which is politically motivated.

“There are no preparations for safe re-opening of the universities and I think parents must insist on safe re-opening. The current classroom and hostel configurations in our universities do not in any way conform to the PTF (Presidential Task Force) on COVID-19 protocols.

“There is no way universities can achieve that. I have said this elsewhere, that rather than for government to have addressed the obvious deficits in the public universities during the lockdown and strike, they were playing to the gallery.”

This statement from ASUU has however, generated mixed reactions as another twitwer user @GospelTimothy1 supported the union by saying, “The truth must be told, let the government and the school authority do the needful, by providing safety equipments and policies, for the safety of everyone.”

Another twitter user @ebuka_lagas blasted the union, saying, “It’s not in his (ASUU President) position to speak of such. Please he should let FG inspection teams to give such verdicts or the university VCs. ASUU should just focus on academic staff of universities.”

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