Prime Minister Mohamed Basindowa has directed the Minister of Higher Education to appoint Majdi Mohammed Saif to the position of Acting Officer to the President of Sana’a University. The appointment comes as an interim measure which aims to put an end to problems and strikes at the university until Hadi returns. The Prime Minister called on the teaching staff to perform its duties as assigned by the national moral duty.
Basindowa’s decision came hours after guards of former military officers opened fire on a march organized by teaching staff and students. The march was organized to demand the firing of the former officer and the election of a replacement.
A source close to the head of the Teaching Staff Union, Abdullah Al-Az’azy, said that Basarda’s guards fired directly at the protestors and aimed at Al-Az’azy in particular. The protestors managed to blockade Basarda in his office, which caused his escorts to begin firing, with three students left injured.
Two weeks ago, the Teaching Staff Union announced the election of a president, deputy, and heads of university faculties, but the results were not implemented. The decisions were not implemented because of the interference of Basarda’s thugs at the voting halls. Consequently, teaching staff members decided to launch a strike that moved into its second week, and which received support from the Yemeni Students’ General Union.
Dr. Abdullah Al-Az’azy stated for the press that they had started an escalation program both inside and outside the university. “The teaching staff cares about the students’ interests and appreciates the difficult situation they are passing through, as they have yet to begin their new year,” he added.
According to him, it would be difficult to stop the strike and resume teaching while defendants remain free and the temporary administration continues to make use of university property.
The Yemeni Students’ General Union condemned the attacks against the teaching staff. It also announced full support for the teaching staff as they attempt to claim their rights, “which are, in the first place, the interests of the university and its students.”