Isn’t it interesting that long after the coronavirus lockdown, #Endsars protests and the aftermath of the protest – palliative looting and re-looting spree, ASUU hasn’t still found a way to fix its problem with the Federal government – or vice versa?
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Who would have thought that in the year 2020, when learning in many parts of the world is fast moving away from the physical classrooms, gigantic campuses, and term papers, a government or system would deprive its citizen of learning for lack of the same?
Well, enough of the lamentation, some interesting revelations will amaze you.
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It is not in my place to assume the task of a referee so as to announce who the guilty or innocent is between the ever-striking ASUU and the ever defensive federal government. But it is my responsibility to help young people see the implication of these incessant strikes by ASUU.
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If my memory serves me right, the current ASUU strike was embarked upon precisely on Monday, March 23, 2020 after an initial two weeks warning strike typical of ASUU.
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Now, let’s do some interesting calculations. As of the time of writing this article, it has already been well over eight months since the strike started. Considering that a semester runs for about three to four months in most tertiary institutions in Nigeria, one may argue that students have now lost a whole session of the academic year to ASUU versus FG clash.
Well, this is not the first time ASUU will embark on a strike as long as a year. But then we need to begin to see these issues with new lenses.
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Assuming an average month has 30 days (exactly, there are 30.42 days in a month), then millions of innocent Nigerian youths attending various universities across the nation have lost at least 308 days of their precious lives wandering like a sheep without a shepherd for eight months – and counting.
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At least 308 days of students’ lives wandering like a sheep without a shepherd for eight months – and counting.
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While 308 days of one’s life wasted may mean nothing to a Nigerian politician who has enough money and time to perpetually travel and enjoy beautiful islands the likes of the Mauritius and Seychelles of this world, it means eternity to a Mama Ola, my widowed neighbour, whose dream of having her son finally graduate from school have been chattered after years of hard labour to pay her son through school.
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If millions of able-bodied youths in Nigeria have had 308 days of their lives wasted, then perhaps we should dig deeper to find out exactly the cost of ASUU strike for an average student in Nigeria.
It is obvious that over 308 days of the youths’ lives have been thrown into the bin in this present needless clash between ASUU and FG. Each day has 24 hours. Let’s get some calculations done, how many hours have been lost during this unbecoming strike? More than 7,392 productive hours of millions of young human beings. Wow! Unbelievable.
More than 7,392 productive hours of millions of young human beings have been wasted.
Perhaps you’ll be surprised to know the further implications of students sitting at home for 8 months doing absolutely nothing meaningful, waiting for an end to an unresolved quagmire that students know nothing about.
There are 1440 minutes in a 24-hour day. ASUU and the Federal Government have both usurped upon the lives of Nigerian students claiming 443,550 minutes of each student’s lives. How do they plan to pay these back? Never!
ASUU and the Federal Government have both usurped upon the lives of Nigerian students claiming 443,550 minutes of each student’s lives.
Now, enough of the revelation, I have some gospel truth for you.
It is obvious that the nation does not place any value whatsoever on educating its people and so it will be futile for any student to put their hope in the education system of this country. At the very least, every Nigerian must take responsibility for their own education.
Consolingly, in today’s world, education is no longer what people get from university degrees after a four- or five-years course – that’s certification.
Education in today’s context can be best described as a decided consciousness of one’s environment – both global and immediate. It’s the ability to study one’s environment, know it so well that one can identify opportunities, analyze them, and go for suitable options without ignoring one’s weaknesses and strengths in order to achieve one’s greatest potential.
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Happily, it doesn’t take an ASUU or a federal government to afford you this kind of education, the type that can give you a level playing field and help you compete favourably with your peers elsewhere in the world. All it takes is you!
So, what do you do with your mobile phone, internet connections, and the social networks? These last 443,550 minutes of your life that ASUU has done nothing with, how have you spent it? Have you been wasting the amazing opportunity that you have had these past 8 months to get some real education?
If you answered in the affirmative it’s high time you taught of your life and what you are doing with it. You need to educate your mind and free your soul of the bondage of ASUU or the Federal government or both of them. You need to be hungry, hungry for opportunities and knowledge, and education.
You need to seek education and it’s right on your palm, and that is what you do when ASUU “strikes” you.
Bukola Owo-Bello is a spirited storyteller, content creator and YouTuber who loves sharing amazing opportunities, inspiration, and ideas with forward-thinking African youths.
Follow her on YouTube, TikTok and Instagram on @BukkiTalks