The National Universities Commission (NUC) has directed Vice Chancellors to commence academic activities in the nation’s varsities on January 18.
The NUC in a statement by its Deputy Executive Secretary (Administration), Chris Maiyaki, on behalf of the Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, on Friday, said any further developments would be communicated to the universities accordingly.
It added that the announcement was in compliance with the directive of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.
The commission, however, directed officers on Grade Level 12 and below to remain at home for a period of five weeks as earlier directed by the Federal Government.
According to the NUC, the new directive became necessary after several enquiries on the full import of the commission’s previous letter with Ref. No. NUC/ES/138/Vol.63/15, dated December 23, 2020, on the issue.
The Commission told universities to safeguard lives by strictly adhering to the extant safety protocols and guidelines of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, which have been communicated severally to them through NUC circulars.
“I am to add that universities on the resumption of academic activities, must under no circumstance violate the full cycle of the semester system, consistent with the Benchmark Minimum Academic Standards approved by the NUC, as well as other extant quality assurance standards and guidelines,” Maiyaki said.
Recall that the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) had been on strike for about 10 months, but the strike was suspended on December 23, 2020 following a press conference by the body’s National President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, at the University of Abuja.