A surly angry crowd of students under the aegis of National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) on Monday stormed the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, lkeja in Lagos, causing traffic snarls.
Their mission: To protest and demand an end to the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) seven-month-old strike which has shut down public universities across the country.
Persecondnews recalls that the students had on Thursday, September 15, barricaded the Lagos-Ibadan expressway and lbadan-Ilesa highway for over three hours, disrupting vehicular movements.
The students had also vowed to ground activities at international airports across the country; #OccupyTheAirports, beginning from Monday, September 19, in protest against the attitude of the federal government towards the striking lecturers and tertiary education.
The Chairman, NANS National Task Force on ‘End ASUU Strike Now,’ Ojo Raymond Olumide, who spoke earlier in Akure, said students were tired of pleading with both parties on the need to end the strike.
According to Olumide, the four-day shutdown of busy highways and expressways had been a success, hence the move to disrupt international travels in order for the “bourgeois and the government” to feel the pains that students had subjected to in the past seven months.
He further cautioned ASUU not to call off the strike after any increment in their salary, but to insist on other demands that led to the strike.
“Nigerian students whose parents created the commonwealth cannot continue to be suffering at home alongside our lecturers while the few who gain from our sweat and blood have their kids abroad.
“We call on students to rise and join us as we take our destinies into our hands. Our demands remain consistently clear and simple.
“We call on ASUU leadership for a meeting as soon as possible to discuss solidarity actions and plan for the next phase of the struggles,” he said.
Persecondnews reports that the presidential candidate of the African Action Congress (ADC) and Sahara reporters publisher, Omoyele Sowore, joined the protesting Nigerian students in protest at the airport.
Describing the mass action as their struggle, Sowore told them: “I am a comrade and I remain a comrade forever, anything you need from us, let us know, but this is your struggle.
“Nigerian students delivered independence to Nigeria in 1960, after this, they hijacked it and started using it against us.
“Nigerian students delivered the democracy we have today in in 1999, but when they flog people, it is the same us that they flog.”
He urged well-meaning Nigerians, commercial vehicle drivers, traders including men and women to support the students’ cause.
Watch: Travelers seen carrying their luggage on their heads as Students protest ASUU Strike, barricade MM Int’l Airport Rd