Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has ordered the immediate reopening of the Benue State University (BSU), Makurdi following the inability of the striking lecturers of the institution to call off its protracted strike.
Ortom handed the executive order to the governing council of the university on Sunday in Makurdi while answering questions from newsmen about the fate of the students since the institution’s Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) refused to compromise their position over their demand for academic earned allowance among other things.
The governor had assured the students who met with him last week that despite the irritating demands of the lecturers who are on first line charge in terms of salaries and are not being owed any month salaries by the state government, that he would do everything possible to ensure the school was reopened by Monday (today).
But the lecturers remained adamant after their long meeting held on Friday during which it was expected that they would call off the strike to enable the students who have been at home for over two months to return to school.
Ortom who said he had done everything humanly possible to ensure that the lecturers shift their grounds by returning to the classrooms for the sake of the future of the undergraduates, insisted that his directives must be carried out for academic and non academic activities to commence.
”I have made several appeals to ASUU in BSU to consider the plight of the innocent students and call off the strike action, but to no avail. I have also paid them additional two months salaries after initially agreeing to call off the strike, yet they collected the monies and remained adamant.
”There is no going back on my directives, the governing council will reopen the school and students will return to campus to continue with their studies. I have fulfilled my part of the bargain despite the harsh economic status by paying two months salaries with a promise to ensure that the arrears owed workers were cleared to pave way for prompt and sustainable monthly payment of salaries in the state,” he said.