Consequences of strike action on Nigerian universities. A study of university of Benin Edo state
The history of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU)’s strike can be traced back to 1978, the period of the beginning of the decline in the oil boom, when the country faced the consequences of the failure by its rulers to use the oil wealth to generate production and a social welfare system. Military dictatorship had eroded deeply the basic freedoms in the society. Academic freedom and university autonomy were casualties of military dictatorship. The funding of education, and so of universities, became poorer. The factors required a changed orientation of the union of academics. However, questionnaires were administered to seek the opinions of the students in University of Benin (UNIBEN) and in Benson Idahosa University (BIU), Edo States and one thousand and fifty four staff and students were randomly selected. Nine hundred and seventy one respondents validly returned their questionnaire. From the analyzed data, it was observed that frequent strikes had adverse effects on the academic performance of students. Based on the findings of the study, recommendations were made that adequate measures should be put in place by government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) etc to check incessant strike in the educational system; and conclusively that government owned Universities should emulated private school owners by avoiding strikes and intensify efforts to convince ASUU on the evils of strikes to see that students would have enough time to study so that they can be able to face challenges in the Labour Market. This paper painstakingly appraised several of these issues and concluded that all stakeholders in the education sector and federal polity should thread softly, be objective, rational, altruistic and magnanimous in order not to make the existence of true federalism (social, political, educational and economic cohesive existence of the people, peace and tranquillity) a fleeting illusion and a mirage.