The Academic Staff Union of Universities on Tuesday said it was not in the purview of the National Universities Commission (NUC) and other tertiary institutions regulatory agencies to shut schools to allow students in universities, polytechnics and colleges of education to vote during the forthcoming elections.

A member of the National Executive Council of ASUU and chairperson of the union at the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Prof Gbolahan Bolarin, said this in an interview with The PUNCH.

He was reacting to calls from individuals and groups, including the House of Representatives that the nation’s higher institutions should be shut during elections so that students who registered near their homes can return home to vote.

He said, “The NUC is just a regulatory body. It doesn’t have the power to order the closure of any university. The only authority that can order this closure apart from the Senate of each institution is the Federal Ministry of Education and the order will be given on behalf of the visitor to all the universities, which is the President.

“By the time the ministry gives the order, the NUC will comply and the directives will be passed down. The House of Representatives should talk to the President about this. The NUC is powerless on this matter.”

The PUNCH reports that the House of Representatives last week Thursday passed a resolution asking the NUC to shut universities so that the students can take part in the forthcoming elections.


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