Members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have said physical contact with their students on campuses is possible only if there is strict compliance with COVID-19 safety protocols.
According to the union leaders who spoken to with newsmen on Monday, since their industrial action was called off last month, they have been at their duty posts and adequately prepared to go on teaching.
The chapter Chairman, the University of Ilorin, ASUU, Prof. Moyosore Ajao, said what the university management had done was to start online teaching.
“As I am talking to you, I am in my house and online teaching is different from physical contacts with students. If you read the directive by the National Universities Commission, NUC, well, it emphasised the need to comply with the PTF mandate on COVID-19 safety protocols.
We are ready to work and have physical contacts with our students only in line with the safety protocols that have been set down, ‘ he said.
In the same vein, the ASUU Chairman, the University of Ibadan, Prof. Ayo Akinwole, stated that his members were prepared to work.
“Yes, the NUC gave a directive, but it was clear that safety protocols on the prevention and management of COVID-19 must be adhered to as stipulated by the PTF on the disease. Apart from the directive by the NUC, the management of each university has the responsibility of assessing the situation on their own campus and provide all necessary things for the well-being and safety of all, ” he said.
The University of Lagos (UNILAG) Chairman of ASUU, Dr Dele Ashiru, said that since their strike of last year was called off last month, members had been waiting on the government and university management to do the needful for a safe reopening of universities.
“We are ready to work. We have called off our strike, but we are not the ones to provide the facilities and other things necessary for the safe reopening of campuses. The safety of lecturers, students, and other workers on campuses is important and should not be handled with levity. Let the facilities be provided, safety protocols enshrined and we are ready to go,” he noted.