BusinessDay

FG meets ASUU today

The federal government has finally decided to meet with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and other related bodies to find a way over the lingering industrial action.

Ibrahim Gambari, the chief of staff to the president, and Chris Ngige, the minister for labour and employment are set to meet with the leaders of the striking ASUU today at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

According to reaching BusinessDay, the meeting is aimed at negotiating with the striking lecturers to resolve the impasse and the public universities reopened for lectures.

Besides, according to one of the chapter leaders of ASUU, the meeting includes members of the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU) and other registered trade unions in Nigerian universities.

Recall that ASUU had gone on a 30-day warning strike on February 14, which was rolled over on March 14, and had just extended the rolled over strike on Monday for another 12 weeks.

The union is asking among other things that the federal government should implement the 2009 ASUU-FG agreement, fund the revitalisation of public universities, the Earned Academic Allowances, endorse the use of the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) system as against the Integrated Payroll and Personnel information system (IPPIS) approved by government and promotion arrears.

Read also: ASUU strike: Nigerians not moved by Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba’s resignation

Meanwhile, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities and Allied Educational Institutions (NASU) joined some weeks after ASUU commenced its strike.

The leaders of SSANU and NASU had in a statement disclosed that the decision was taken following the Nigerian government’s continued silence over the unions’ demands.

“You will recall that the first warning strike of two weeks started on the midnight of Sunday, March 27, 2021, while the extension of another two weeks that commenced on Sunday 10th April 2022 would expire on midnight of Sunday, April 24, 2022.

“Unfortunately, the government has kept mute and remains indifferent to the demands of the JAC of NASU and SSANU.

“Deriving from the feedback received from our branches in respect of the resolutions conducted which supported fully the ongoing strike and other actions to be taken by the leadership of JAC, this is to inform members that the strike has been extended by one month to commence on midnight of Sunday, April 24, 2022 pending when the government would have change of heart and be favourably disposed to our demands as highlighted in our letters dated March 1, 2022 and March 16, 2022 to the representative of the government, the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment,” the statement read in part.

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