Some Vice-Chancellors of universities under Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU have said that it was wrong for ASUU to claim that there were no COVID-19 guidelines for reopening Universities.
ASUU, haven called off 9-month strike insisted that Nigerian universities were not ready to re-open in the middle of a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.
VC of a federal university who choose to remain anonymous said it was wrong for ASUU to claim that there were no guidelines for reopening varsities. He noted that some of the VCs had planned to stagger resumption.
He said: “I think ASUU should begin to speak to facts. In as much as we do not want the COVID-19 outbreak on our campuses, we had our plans.
“Some academic activities can resume for classes with a few populations, LASU recently held examinations for students in compliance with COVID-19 guidelines, and it went well.
“What do they mean by saying there is no guideline for reopening?”
Another VC, who also preferred anonymity, agreed with his colleague, saying universities were ready to resume academic activities.
On his part, VC of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Prof. Felix Salako, said universities were ready to reopen nine months after closure. Addressing journalists at the university in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Salako described ASUU’s position as shocking and a disservice to the university system.
Salako said contrary to the ASUU narrative, universities, including his, had made adequate preparations for resumption.
According to him, arrangements have been made for both medical equipment and infrastructure to ensure students receive lectures virtually and physically in compliance with COVID-19 safety protocols.
He said apart from the provision of hand sanitizers made by the university and handwashing facility at every point, the management had fumigated the campus and hostels more than 10 times since the outbreak of the virus in Nigeria.
Salako, who also took journalists on a facility tour, expressed regret that the ASUU chairman in the university was in attendance at the last Senate meeting where final decisions on the resumption of academic activities were reached.
He said: “It is also glaring even to the blinds that FUNAAB management kick-started the second round of fumigation of every nook and cranny of the university, including union secretariat, two weeks ago.
“It is equally worthy of note that FUNAAB management provided wash hand basin/bucket and hand sanitizer at the entrance of each college.
“It is also on records that FUNAAB Registrar issues directives from time to time on the needs for everyone to adhere strictly with all non-pharmaceutical guidelines for the prevention of COVID-19.
“Above all is the training organised by the management for the academic staff this week to teach them how to handle virtual lecture.
He added that if the above were already carried out by the management, then what else is ASUU insinuating.