ASUU Chairman says drop-out rate in schools worrisome

Dr Peter Ubi, the Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) University of Calabar chapter, has expressed concerns over the number of students dropping out of school in the country.

Ubi made the expression in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Calabar.

The ASUU chairman was speaking in relation to the achievements of the current administration in education, during the first year in office.

He said that a good number of students have dropped out of school in the past one year due to the harsh economic condition in the country.

Ubi who said that basic education ought to be free in the country, expressed dissatisfaction that poor families faced difficulties sending their children to school.

“More students are dropping out of school following the cost of acquiring education.

“The drop-out challenge is affecting all levels of education, many parents are falling below poverty line,” he said.

The chairman said that education institutions in the country had lost a huge number of efficient and qualified manpower to migration.

“Young scholars are leaving in search of greener pastures. This challenge is worse in tertiary institutions.

“They will claim to be going for further studies abroad, but we know that they are not returning, it is a painful reality,” he said.

Ubi urged the Federal Government to remove ASUU from the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System, (IPPIS) to save the university system.

“They made us this promise but nothing has been done about it till today,” he said.

He said that lecturers were owed both salaries and promotion arrears, and that the development had dampened their morale.

“We only work to earn a living, not because there is dignity in labour. The nation’s education sector has achieved nothing significant in the past one year.

“This is because the budgetary allocation to the sector is still far from the standard recommendation.

“The only thing you see today in most institutions are TETFund-sponsored projects, which have been there before the current administration.

”The rate of school drop-out and migration won’t be this high if the system was lively and attractive,” he said.

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