The Ahmed Maiwada-led faction of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) has called on the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to ensure that they reach and truce and end the ongoing strike action soonest.
The ANA faction made the call during its 39th International Convention which was held in Awka, Anambra state.
“This is not acceptable at all. It does not show us as a serious nation. Education is the bedrock of development anywhere in the world. Yet, our educational institutions at the tertiary level has been shut down for almost a year, now. That is too long a time in the life of those innocent students,” Maiwada lamented.
“We call on the FGN and ASUU to return to the discussion table, and ensure that a lasting solution is found to the face-off between them over issues of Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information Management System (IPPIS).
“Our children deserve to be back in school and we must ensure that they do. We also call on all men of reason, to prevail on both parties to ensure that they reach a compromise on the issue soon” Maiwada, a legal practitioner and novelist, added.
The convention, which was held between December 10 and 12, 2020, with the theme: “Nigerian Literature and Restoration: A Return to the Source”, brought together writers from across the nation to the city of Awka where they deliberated on the future of writing in Nigeria.
A total of 15 state chapters were represented at the convention. The states were, FCT, Anambra, Adamawa, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Edo, Ekiti, Kano, Katsina, Niger, Nasarawa, Ondo, Osun, Plateau and Taraba.
TIt featured various literary activities such as paper presentations, round table discussions, plenary sessions, spelling bee competition for secondary school students in Anambra state, and courtesy visit to the country home of the late Chinua Acheb
The keynote address was delivered by Prof Ogaga Okuyade of the Niger Delta University.
He extolled the contributions of early writers to the development of the Nigerian nation, citing the enviable examples of Wole Soyinka, Chinua Achebe and their likes.
The Professor of Literature also challenged current crop of Nigerian writers to use themselves as tools u to the restoration of Nigerian literature and the Nigerian nation herself.
At the Annual General Meeting, a decision was made for bye-election for which Johnson Amusan of the Osun State chapter emerged as the legal adviser of the association, and his immediate appointment as the chairman of the substantive constitution review committee, having served in acting capacity in the las three months.
Prof Bode Sowande, Alhaji Yahaya Dangana and Professor Tracy Utoh-Ezeaju were nominated and unanimously endorsed by the congress as chairman and members of the Board of Trustee, replacing Achebe and T.M
The new BoT members are expected to join the duo of Mabel Segun and Labo Yari who have been serving in the same capacity.