BusinessDay

FG breaks ASUU, registers 2 new university unions

The Federal Government has registered the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA) as a university union in a bid to break the influence of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

The government also approved the registration of the Nigerian Association of Medical and Dental Academics (NAMDA) as a trade union.

Chris Ngige, minister of labour and employment, who presented the certificates of registration to the two unions, said they will exist alongside ASUU.

Read also: Should court also compel ASUU to give their best teaching?

The minister further stated that the new unions will enjoy the rights and privileges accorded to other academic unions in the tertiary education system.

CONUA broke away from ASUU in 2018 after some disagreements two years earlier. It is a union for lecturers across the nation’s universities and it is led by a lecturer at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Niyi Sunmonu.

CONUA has been lobbying the federal government to recognise it as a union in the university system. The congress has repeatedly knocked ASUU for using strike as the only tool to resolve its issues with the government, saying it has caused more harm than good in the university academic system, and that there are other ways of getting demands met.

According to CONUA, the liberalisation of academic unions would not only end incessant strikes in universities, but would also engender cross-fertilisation of ideas, nurture healthy competition and protect the interests of all stakeholders.

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