National Association of Polytechnics students (NAPS), yesterday in Abuja held a peaceful protest over a protracted strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics.
The strike, which is in its 10th month, has paralysed academic activities in the nation’s Polytechnics.
But on Friday, students from various polytechnics across the country blocked roads leading to Federal Secretariat in the nation’s capital to draw the attention of the federal government to their plight.
Security was tightened around the Federal Secretariat, resulting in gridlock. Nobody was allowed to enter the secretariat building.
Chanting uncomplimentary songs against the supervising Minister of Education, Ezewo Nyesom Wike, the placard carrying students vowed not to leave the premises of the Ministry until they were being attended to.
NAPS Senate President, Comrade Salahu Deen Lukman who spoke on behalf of the students said over 10 students have died since the strike started while others have been exposed to different vices.
Lukman an HND student of Kaduna Polytechnic said the students are demanding three key issues the removal of the supervising minister Education Nyesom Wike and the appointment of a substantive Minister; the removal of dichotomy between university and polytechnics graduates; and for government to look into all the ASUP demands and respond urgently before it will be too late.
Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mr. Daniel Chike Uwaezuoke, who spoke on behalf of the Minister pleaded with the students for calm, assuring that government has constituted a committee to look into the matter.
“We have met with almost all the demands of ASUP and left only with the issue of dichotomy. But Federal government has formed a committee which will look at it and come out with a report that will be forwarded to the commission and from there to the president for a lasting solution. We have not been silent about this matter because it concerns our children and whatever bothers our children bother us too,” he submitted. (Leadership)