The Exam Ethics Marshals International (EEMI), an NGO, said on Thursday that Nigerians opposed the payment of salaries to polytechnics and colleges of education lecturers while on strike. It said an opinion poll showed that Nigerians criticised the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) and the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) for drawing such salaries. The opinion poll, the EEMI said, was based on responses to questionnaires from 2,915 respondents in the six geo-political zones.
The Chairman of EEI, Chief Ike Onyechere, in a statement in Abuja, said public opinion indicated that Nigerians were totally against the action of the two unions. “Against the background that Nigerians appear indifferent to the action by colleges of education and polytechnic lecturers, contrary to what obtained when ASUU was on strike, Exam Ethics conducted a nationwide public opinion poll to find out why.
“The poll revealed that 89 per cent of Nigerians are against the strike on account of the fact that the lecturers have continued to draw salaries without working.
“Respondents indicated that it is unethical and
fraudulent for any group of people to be drawing salaries for work they did not do, especially as the lost time can never be recovered and the possibility of doing the work foreclosed forever,” it said. According to Onyechere, Nigerians are of the opinion that incessant strikes by lecturers have virtually destroyed the tertiary education system. “Strikes by lecturers promote examination malpractice and academic dishonesty as students are subjected to
examinations immediately after strikes for courses that were never taught,” it noted.
He said respondents were particularly aggrieved that strikes were fuelling “Sorting”, the act of selling marks, grades and degrees for cash, and other material benefits by unscrupulous lecturers.
The EEMI chairman lamented that the victims of these strikes were poor students whose parents could not afford private education, while lecturers continued to draw salaries and had nothing to lose.
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