ASUU Strike Latest Update: ASUU to Declare Lecture-Free Day in Universities Across Nigeria Over Half Pay
- ASUU Strike Latest Update: ASUU to Declare Lecture-Free Day in Universities Across Nigeria Over Half Pay
- Earlier: ASUU Begins NEC Meeting
- Earlier: Again, ASUU Files Appeal Against NIC Judgment
- Earlier: We Don’t Have Transport To Go Back To Work – ASUU
- Earlier: ASUU Officially Suspends Eight Months Strike
- Earlier: ASUU Holds NEC Meeting Tomorrow, To Call Off Strike Friday
- Earlier: ASUU Branches Set to Vote Today, Wednesday Over Ongoing Strike
- ASUU Strike Will Be Over In A Matter Of Days – Gbajabiamila
- Earlier: Court Of Appeal Orders ASUU To Call Off Strike Immediately
- Earlier: President Buhari Accuses ASUU of Corruption
- Earlier: FG Breaks ASUU’s Rank, Registers Two Academic Unions
- Earlier: Again, Buhari Urges Lecturers to Go Back to Classes
- Earlier: FG Orders Vice-Chancellors to Reopen Universities, Commence Lectures
- Earlier: ASUU Appeals National Industrial Court’s Ruling to Call Off Strike
- Earlier: Court Orders ASUU To Call Off Strike
- Earlier: Court Adjourns Case Till September 16
- Earlier: FG Drags ASUU to Industrial Court, Says Negotiations Have Failed
- Earlier: FG Increases Salaries of Lecturers, ASUU Rejects Offer
- Earlier: ASUU Extends Strike Again
- Earlier: ASUU NEC Set to Meet on Sunday to Decide Strike Continuation
- Earlier: ASUU Must Compensate Students for Wasted Time – Minister of Education
- ASUU Releases Press Release
- Earlier: ASUU-FG Meeting Ends in Deadlock Again
- Earlier: ASUU-FG Meets Today
- Earlier: Again, ASUU Rolls Over Strike By 4-Weeks
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Protest Intensifies As NLC Leads Protest in Abuja
- Earlier: NLC to Embark on Two-day Nationwide Protest from July 26th
- ASUU Strike: Enough is Enough, Buhari Warns Striking Lecturers
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Will Soon End – FG
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Will End Soon – Minister of Labour
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Will Be Called Off Next Week – Minister of Education
- Earlier: Renegotiation of 2009 Agreement At Advanced Stage – ASUU
- Earlier: ASUU’s Meeting With FG Was Fair As Union Awaits Response From Government
- Strike: ASUU, FG Holds Meeting Today
- Earlier: We’ve Made Progress With FG, Strike May End Soon – ASUU President
- Earlier: FG Makes Move to End ASUU, ASUP Strikes, Begins Payment of Arrears
- Earlier: No Agreement With Federal Govt to End Strike
- Earlier: Buhari Begs ASUU to Call off Strike
- Earlier: ASUU Extends Strike by 12 Weeks
- Earlier: ASUU Threatens to Extend Strike Indefinitely As Warning Strike Ends, Says FG Not Serious
- Earlier: ASUU and Federal Govt to Resume Talks Next Week
- Earlier: Buhari Approves Funds for Tertiary Institutions Amid ASUU Strike
- Earlier: FG Denies Knowing Why ASUU Is On Strike
- Earlier: Pay Us N200bn from N4trn Fuel Subsidy to Return to School – ASUU
- Earlier: Outcome of the April 11th Meeting Between FG and ASUU
- Earlier: Union Lists Conditions for Schools Resumption
- Earlier: ASUU, NASU, SSANU Are Wicked For Continuous Strike – Federal Govt
- Earlier: ASUU Strike to continue for another two months – Official
- Earlier: FG Gives Committee 3 Months to Re-negotiate With ASUU
- Earlier: ASUU Vows Not to Renegotiate As FG Says It Doesn’t Have Funds to Meet Its Demands
- Earlier: Student Group Demands Resignation of Education Minister, Threatens Total Shutdown of the Country
- Earlier: Ngige Gives Update on FG-ASUU Negotiation
- Earlier: Education Minister Meets With Protesting Students, After Initially Walking Out on Them
- Earlier: FG and ASUU Meeting Ends, Strike Continues
- Earlier: FG Meets ASUU Today Over Strike Action
- Earlier: ASUU NEC Converges Today, to Meet FG
- Earlier: FG Makes Move to Meet Lecturers’ Demands
- Earlier: ASUU Embarks on One-Month Strike Action
- Earlier: ASUU Commences Two-Day Meeting, Takes Final Decision on Sunday
- Earlier: ASUU Vows to Commence Industrial Action
- Earlier: Lecturers Postpones Decision on Strike, Accuses FG of Blackmail
- Earlier: ASUU to Take Final Decision on Proposed Strike Tomorrow
- Ealier: We Were Not Paid N52.12bn, ASUU Slams Minister of Labour
- Ealier: FG Pays ASUU N52.5bn to Avert Strike Action
- Earlier: ASUU Await Reports from Various Branches to Determine Next Line of Action
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Looms As Union Gives 24 Hours To Declare Action
- Earlier: ASUU Gives FG One-Week Window to Release N22.27bn Earned Allowances
- Earlier: Federal Govt to Meet Lecturers This Week to Avoid Planned Strike
- Earlier: ASUU Strike Looms As Federal Govt Keeps Mum Over The Union’s Agitation
- Earlier: We’re Not Commencing Strike Tomorrow – ASUU Decries
- Earlier: ASUU to Embark on Nationwide Strike If FG Fails to Honour Agreement By Aug 31st
- Earlier: ASUU Threatens Fresh Strike Action
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said it will declare a lecture-free day across tertiary institutions in the country, as a way of protesting against the withholding of their salaries and the half-pay they received for the month of October.
The chairman of the University of Ilorin chapter of ASUU, Moyosore Ajao who spoke on the planned lecture-free day, said it won’t be on the same day for all institutions.
ASUU embarked on strike in February 2022, which was later suspended following a court order in October 2022. Upon resumption, the government insisted on not paying for the period for which the strike lasted and only paid the lecturers for the number of days they worked in October.
Earlier: ASUU Begins NEC Meeting
The National Executive Council (NEC) of the Academic Staff Union of Universities has reportedly commenced its meeting,
The meeting started around 12:40 pm on Monday afternoon.
A member of NEC made this known in an interview with our correspondent under anonymity. “The meeting just started”, the source said.
The PUNCH had earlier reported how ASUU summoned an emergency NEC meeting following the payment of “half salaries” to lecturers by the government.
The union had described the October 2022 salaries as “amputated and insensitive.”
Justifying the government’s decision, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, noted that the government paid the lecturers pro-rata.
But human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, SAN, who happens to be the lead counsel to ASUU, in a statement released on Sunday, explained why the no-work-no-pay policy could not be applicable to ASUU.
Falana said, “In justifying the payment of half salaries to members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities for the month of October 2022, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, has invoked the “no-work-no- pay” clause in section 43 of the Trade Disputes Act (Cap T8), Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004. According to the Minister of Labour and Employment, the lecturers ‘were paid in pro rata to the number of days they worked in October, counting from the day that they suspended their industrial action. Pro-rata was done because you cannot pay them for work not done. Everybody’s hands are tied.
“The position of the Federal Government is factually faulty and legally misleading. Since the industrial action was called off, the public universities have adjusted their calendars to ensure that the 2021/2022 academic session is not cancelled.
“Consequently, students are currently taking lectures or writing examinations that were disrupted during the strike of the ASUU. Therefore, having regard to the facts and circumstances of the ASUU strike, the doctrine of “no work, no pay” is totally inapplicable as students who were not taught during the strike are currently attending lectures and writing examinations.
Source: The PUNCH
Earlier: Again, ASUU Files Appeal Against NIC Judgment
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has again filed an appeal against the judgment of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria which ordered the striking lecturers to return back to work, Sunday PUNCH has gathered.
It was also gathered that the court had yet to fix a date for the official hearing of the suit.
The counsel for ASUU, Femi Falana, SAN, made this known in an exclusive interview with our correspondent in Abuja on Saturday.
Falana, who also shared the official documents of the appeal with our reporter, noted that the union was still awaiting the official hearing date from the appellate court.
The PUNCH had earlier reported how Justice Hamman Polycarp of the Industrial Court ordered the striking lecturers back to work.
ASUU had filed an appeal before the Appeal Court in Abuja, but the appellate court noted that it would not hear ASUU’s appeal should the union fail to obey the ruling of the lower court.
In line with the ruling, ASUU called off its strike on October 13, 2022.
However, Falana made it known that the appeal was filed on October 14, 2022.
“The appeal was filed on October 14, 2022. However, no date for hearing yet,” Falana had said
Speaking further on Ngige’s advice for ASUU to take CONUA to court over registration, Falana said, “The minister knows that he deliberately committed illegality. He should have gone to court to find out the legality of his proliferation of unions among academic staff in the universities.”
Source: The PUNCH
Earlier: We Don’t Have Transport To Go Back To Work – ASUU
Following the suspension of the 8-month-old strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the union President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, has said that the lecturers may have difficulties in resuming classroom activities as the government is yet to pay their 8 months’ salary arrears.
Osodeke who confirmed the suspension of the strike in a television interview on Sunday, October 16, said the strike was suspended as a way of obeying the national industrial court order which had mandated the lecturers to resume school activities while negotiations with the federal government are ongoing.
He explained that lecturers are supposed to resume on Monday, October 17, but this may be hindered due to the lack of money for transportation, as a majority of the striking lecturers live far away from the school campuses, and most schools do not provide accommodation.
He further clarified that its disagreements with the government have not been fully resolved, and no agreement has been signed, however, the union expects the government to pay the eight months’ salary arrears to enable lecturers to resume while negotiations continue.
Earlier: ASUU Officially Suspends Eight Months Strike
The Academic Staff Union of Universities has suspended its eight month old strike.
The decision to suspend the strike action was taken at the end of the National Executive Council meeting which was held at the ASUU secretariat in Abuja.
Following the suspension, the Union has released a press statement. It reads;
Earlier: ASUU Holds NEC Meeting Tomorrow, To Call Off Strike Friday
The National Executive Council (NEC) of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) would be meeting tomorrow, during which the union will deliberate on recent developments in the face-off between it and the federal government.
Sources told Vanguard that the NEC meeting would be preceded by congresses in its branches nationwide today.
In line with its tradition, the NEC meeting would start late on Thursday and the decision made public early Friday morning when the ongoing strike is expected to be called off.
Incidentally, that day would mark the eighth month the industrial action started.
The developments , it was gathered, are as a result of the intervention of speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, in the matter after the Court of Appeal last Friday gave the union seven days to comply with the ruling of the National Industrial Court in Abuja, that it should call off the action before further entertainment of the matter between it and the FG would continue.
Also, the issue of the withheld salaries was resolved, with the government promising to pay in tranches.
The lecturers have not been paid since March like the non-teaching staff who resumed duties about two months ago.
With this development, Governing Councils of affected universities are expected to call for the reopening of the schools from next week.
However, students’ resumption of classes may not be immediate, as hostels and other facilities not used for about eight months would have to be put in shape.
Recall that ASUU went on strike on February 14, this year over some demands from the government.
Top on the list is the use of Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System , IPPIS as the payment platform in the university sector which the union wants scrapped.
Earlier: ASUU Branches Set to Vote Today, Wednesday Over Ongoing Strike
Various branches of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) at various varsities will convene today (Tuesday) and tomorrow (Wednesday) to commence traditional voting over the ongoing strike of the union.
The decision of the various branches will be transmitted to the National Executive Council for final decision.
A highly-placed source within the NEC disclosed this in a chat with correspondent of The PUNCH in Abuja on Tuesday.
“We got the directive after the meeting with the speaker yesterday(Monday). The intervention was timely. Branches will vote between today and tomorrow after which the decisions will be convened to the NEC,” the source said.
The PUNCH reports that the new development comes on the heels of the meeting with the speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, who called several meetings between the union and the side of the Federal Government.
The lead counsel to ASUU, Femi Gbajabiamila, SAN had also explained to The PUNCH that the strike would be over in a few days.
ASUU had on Monday, February 14, 2022 embarked on a strike over what the union described as the failure of the government to meet lingering demands of the union.
The minister of labour and employment, Chris Ngige after what he described as “failed negotiations” dragged the striking lecturers to the National Industrial Court.
The National Industrial Court had on 21 September ordered ASUU to call off the strike.
The court granted the motion on notice filed by the federal government, directing the lecturers to return to classrooms.
Ruling on the interlocutory injunction, the trial judge, Polycarp Hamman, restrained ASUU from continuing with the industrial action pending the determination of the suit filed against ASUU by the federal government.
Displeased by the ruling, the union headed to the appeal court to appeal the ruling.
It also filed a stay of execution of the ruling of the industrial court.
The Court of Appeal ordered the striking lecturers to “immediately” call off the eight months strike, having struck out ASUU’s application for a stay of execution of the lower court’s order.
It said it was within ASUU’s right to appeal the decision of the industrial court.
Agreeing with the federal government’s argument that ASUU cannot approach the appellate court with “dirty hands”, the panel held, “should the applicant fail to obey the order (of the lower court), the leave granted shall be automatically vacated.”
Source: The PUNCH
ASUU Strike Will Be Over In A Matter Of Days – Gbajabiamila
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has hinted that the long-running strike embarked upon by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU will be over “in matter of days.”
The Speaker stated this while briefing the leadership of ASUU about his meetings with the President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday.
Meanwhile, the leadership of ASUU has hailed the House of Representatives for its intervention in the fall out between university lecturers and the Federal Government.
The President of ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, said, “For the first time, we have seen light at the end of the tunnel.”
More details to follow…
Earlier: Court Of Appeal Orders ASUU To Call Off Strike Immediately
The Court of Appeal in Abuja has ordered the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, to call of the strike immediately as it is the only condition that the union’s request to appeal the ruling of the National Industrial Court which ordered the union to call off it’s strike will be given effect.
At the court session on Friday, the appellate court said ASUU should obey the order of an industrial court which directed the suspension of the strike before seeking to appeal the judgement.
The court, however, granted the application on the condition that the union obeys the ruling of the lower court and calls off the strike immediately pending the determination of the substantive suit.
The court gave ASUU seven days within which to file the appeal following the obedience of the ruling of the lower court.
Earlier: President Buhari Accuses ASUU of Corruption
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday indicted the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) of corrupt practices.
While declaring open the Fourth National Summit on Diminishing Corruption organised by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Office of Secretary to Government of the Federation (OSGF) and Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Buhari said ASUU is no less complicit in the corruption in tertiary education, DailyTrust reports.
He said corruption in the education sector continues to undermine investments, while critics downplay funding by focusing only on budgetary allocations, urging a more comprehensive re-evaluation of expenditure.
The president said: “This year’s summit will mirror how corruption undermines educational policies, investments and create an unfriendly learning environment for our youths. “Incessant strikes especially by unions in the tertiary education often imply that government is grossly underfunding education, but I must say that corruption in the education system from basic level to the tertiary level has been undermining our investment in the sector and those who go on prolonged strikes on flimsy reasons are no less complicit.
“The 1999 Constitution places a premium on education by placing it on the Concurrent List, thereby laying the responsibilities of budgeting and underwriting qualitative education on both the Federal and State Governments. “The total education budget for each year is therefore a reflection of both federal and state budgets and should be viewed as other financial commitments in their totality.
“The allocation to education in the federal budget should not be considered via allocation to the Federal Ministry of Education and also academic institutions alone, but should include allocation to the Universal Basic Education, transfers to TETFUND and refund from the Education Tax Pool Account to TETFUND. “Corruption in the expenditure of internally generated revenue of tertiary institutions is a matter that has strangely not received the attention of stakeholders in tertiary education, including unions.
“I call on stakeholders to demand accountability in the administration of academic institutions and for unions to interrogate the bloated personnel and recurrent expenditure of their institutions. Let me also implore the Unions to work with the government to put faces and identities to names on the payroll. “Due to declining resources, the government cannot bear the cost of funding education alone. I task our academics to attract endowments, research and other grants to universities, polytechnics and colleges of education similar to what obtains in other countries.”
Earlier: FG Breaks ASUU’s Rank, Registers Two Academic Unions
The Federal Government on has broken the ranks of The Academic Staff Union Of Universities (ASUU) when it registered two unions in the university system.
The unions are the National Association of Medical and Dental Academics (NAMDA) and the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA).
The Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige, explained that the two bodies will exist along aside ASUU.
ASUU has been on strike since February 14, 2022 as lecturers of public universities protest unpaid allowances and demand better welfare package from the Federal Government.
Earlier: Again, Buhari Urges Lecturers to Go Back to Classes
President Muhammadu Buhari, on Monday, July 11, during a meeting with some governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC), legislators, and political leaders at his residence in Daura, Katsina State, called on the Academic Staff Union of Universities to reconsider their position on the prolonged strike.
The president who noted that the future of the country lies in the quality of educational institutions and education appealed to the striking lecturers to resume academic activities with students in classrooms while negotiations continue.
Buhari further expressed his fears about the continuous closure of schools and the impact it would have on the future development of the country, saying enough is enough. He called on well-meaning Nigerians, particularly those close to the members of the union, to intervene by persuading the lecturers to reconsider the federal government’s position on resumption.
Earlier: FG Orders Vice-Chancellors to Reopen Universities, Commence Lectures
The Federal Government through the National Universities Commission (NUC) has ordered vice-chancellors to re-open schools and allow students resume lectures.
This was made known in a letter signed by the Director, Finance and Accounts of the NUC, Sam Onazi, on behalf of the Executive Secretary of the commission, Professor Abubakar Rasheed.
The letter which was made exclusively available to The PUNCH on Monday was addressed to all vice-chancellors; Pro-Chancellors and chairmen of governing councils of federal universities.
“Ensure that ASUU members immediately resume/commence lectures; Restore the daily activities and routines of the various University campuses”, the letter partly reads.
Recall that the national industrial court of Nigeria on Wednesday ordered the Academic Staff Union of Universities to call off its ongoing nationwide strike.
Source: The PUNCH
Earlier: ASUU Appeals National Industrial Court’s Ruling to Call Off Strike
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has filed an appeal challenging the ruling of Justice Polycarp Hamman of the National Industrial Court (NIC) Abuja which ordered the lecturers to call off their seven-month-old strike and return to the classrooms.
ASUU’s Counsel, Mister Femi Falana, based their appeal on 14 grounds. The motion is seeking two reliefs which are:
A) The leave to file the appeal pursuant to Section 243 of the Constitution that requires the party to seek a leave of court to appeal the judgement or ruling of the National Industrial Court (NIC).
B) Seeking for a stay of execution of the orders of the court, pending the hearing and determination of the appeal.
The application was supported by an affidavit which was deposed to by Samuel Ameh, who is a research assistant in the office of Falana and Falana’s Chambers.
He deposed on the note stated that he had the consent of ASUU to swear on oath. Ameh further stated in the affidavit that he was informed that the said ruling affects the fundamental and other legal rights of ASUU and its members.
It was his further disposition that the court below made the order without jurisdiction as the said referral was incompetent.
It was deposed further that ASUU has a very strong case and appeal which the court ought to decide one way or the other. He, therefore, prayed the court to preserve the subject matter of the dispute so as not to render the appeal nugatory.
GROUNDS OF APPEAL
That the learned trial Judge – Justice Polycarp Hamman – erred in law and thereby occasioned a miscarriage of justice when he decided to hear and determine the respondents’ motion for an interlocutory injunction when he knew or ought to have known that the substantive suit filed by the claimant, was not initiated by due process of law.
That the court is bound to resolve issues surrounding the competence and validity of an initiating process before proceeding to grant reliefs in an application emanating therefrom.
Source: Channels TV
Earlier: Court Orders ASUU To Call Off Strike
Delivering a ruling on the interlocutory injunction filed by the Federal government , Justice Polycarp Hamman restrained ASUU from continuing with the industrial action pending the determination of the suit.
Justice Polycap who is a vacation judge ordered that the case filed be returned to the president of the Industrial Court for reassignment to another judge.
This order comes a few hours after the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) threatened not to allow any political campaign hold across the country till students of public universities return to classrooms.
Chairman, NANS National Taskforce, Ojo Olumide, announced this at a press conference in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, on Wednesday, some days to September 28, the official date for candidates to kick-off campaign as announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
“Our blocking of access to public roads and ports is just a warning. If the government fails to conclude all the negotiation and agreement with ASUU within the frame of two weeks, they will witness more protests and rallies all over the country, they will also witness the annoyance, anger and frustration of Nigerians Students who have been at home for the past seven months.
“As we promise them that we will not allow any political campaign to hold across the country until we are back to class. This government has pushed so many Nigerians students into depression. We say enough is enough; we can no longer bear the brunt from this avoidable crisis in our nation public ivory towers again,” he said.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has been on strike since February 14, 2022 as talks between the Federal Government and lecturers of public universities have not yielded a comprise upon which students can return to class.
More details shortly.
Earlier: Court Adjourns Case Till September 16
The National Industrial Court of Nigeria has adjourned to September the 16th, 2022 the suit filed by the Federal Government against the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the industrial action embarked upon by the union about seven months ago.
The Federal Government approached the court sitting in Abuja, requesting an order for ASUU to resume it continues to engage the union to address their dispute.
A statement by the Head, Press and Public Relations at the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, indicated that the matter was referred to the registrar of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria by the Minister, Chris Ngige on Thursday 8 September.
At Monday’s proceedings, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) sought to join the suit as an interested party.
SERAP’s lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegnoruwa (SAN) said his client had filed a similar suit to compel the Federal Government to honour its 2009 agreement with the striking lecturers.
He said SERAP’s request to join in the matter is based on the need to forestall the duplicity of outcomes concerning the industrial dispute. However, counsel to the Federal Government, Tijjani Gazali (SAN) opposes SERAP’s application to consolidate the suits.
He told the judge that SERAP’s application was premature as the case was billed for mention on Monday. Counsel to ASUU, Femi Falana, however, argued that he was aware of the efforts by lawyers to file court papers in the suit on Monday.
The judge ruled that the suit is not ripe for consolidation by SERAP. The judge said he was only presiding over the matter as a vacation judge and that the case would be assigned to another judge for adjudication.
He ordered the parties in the suit to file and exchange court documents as he adjourned the matter to Friday, 16 September 2022.
Speaking to journalists outside the court, counsel to ASUU, Falana, berated the Federal Government for going to the court. He said the Federal Government should stop trying to blackmail ASUU, maintaining that university lecturers have not stopped working.
On his part, the counsel to the Federal Government, Tijanni Gazali, said ASUU cannot dictate to the Federal Government what platform its members are to be paid.
He said the agreement reached between the Federal Government and ASUU has been substantially implemented and that details of their agreement will form part of the papers they will be filing before the court.
Earlier: FG Drags ASUU to Industrial Court, Says Negotiations Have Failed
The raging dispute between the federal government and the Academic Staff Union Universities (ASUU) has taken another turn, as the federal government will take the lecturers’ union to an industrial court next Monday.
Recall that ASUU had embarked on strike since February 14 to protest alleged decay of infrastructure at the various institutions, as well as neglect of the welfare of its members.
A reliable source at the Federal Ministry of Labour told THISDAY last night that the ministry’s Trade Dispute Department had filed a case before the Industrial Arbitration Court in Abuja and that the hearing would commence next Monday.
According to the source, “The federal government has filed a case at the Industrial Court challenging the continued strike by the university teachers. This is in conformity with Section 17 of the Trade Dispute Act.”
There have been series of negotiations between the federal government and the ASUU leadership but all ended in stalemate without a tangible outcome.
However, talks between the federal government and ASUU finally hit the rocks last Tuesday after both sides met at the National University Commission’s office in Abuja.
The federal government had said that it would not sign any other agreement it cannot implement.
Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, disclosed this during a meeting of Pro-Chancellors and Vice Chancellors of Federal Universities, held at the NUC’s office.
Adamu said President Muhammadu Buhari had warned the government’s team involved in the negotiation with ASUU against signing an agreement that the government would not be able to fulfil.
The minister said the government had offered the union a 23.5 per cent salary increase “for all categories of the workforce in federal universities, except for the professorial cadre which will enjoy a 35 per cent upward review. He said the government had also promised that N150 billion “shall be provided for in the 2023 Budget as funds for the revitalisation of federal universities, to be disbursed to the Institutions in the First Quarter of the year.”
Also, the government said N50 billion would be provided “for in the 2023 Budget for the payment of outstanding arrears of earned academic allowances, to be paid in the first quarter of the year.”
However, ASUU and three other university unions have rejected the offer, describing it as “inadequate to meet their respective demands needed to tackle the challenges confronting the university system.”
Earlier: FG Increases Salaries of Lecturers, ASUU Rejects Offer
Federal government has announced an upward review of the salaries of lecturers in universities with a 35 percent increment for professors, and a 23.5 percent increment for lecturers below the rank of professors.
This was disclosed by the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, on Tuesday, September 6, at a meeting with vice-chancellors and other stakeholders in the university system.
The minister further stated that the 2023 budget will make provision for the sum of N150 billion and N50 billion as funds for the revitalization of Federal Universities and the payment of outstanding areas of earned academic allowances, respectively. The funds is be paid to the institutions in the first quarter of the year.
However, the leadership of ASUU and three other university unions who had been on strike rejected the offer, describing it as ”inadequate”.
According to the unions, the projected increment cannot meet their respective demands needed to tackle the challenges confronting the university system. A source close to the academic body also revealed that the union is seeking over a 100 percent increase in salaries.
Earlier: ASUU Extends Strike Again
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), after a series of heated discussions, has decided to extend its ongoing strike.
The decision was taken after the National Executive Council meeting at the union’s headquarters at the University of Abuja on Monday morning.
ASUU had declared the commencement of a strike on Monday, February 14, 2022, at the University of Lagos.
Meanwhile, in an interview with The PUNCH, the spokesperson for the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, explained that the government had taken all possible steps to end the strike.
He said, “As regards the next steps, the government has already inaugurated a committee to harmonise the IPPIS, UTAS, and UP3. This will ensure that the government will pay with only one payment platform that will harmonise all the technical peculiarities.
“If you bring some demands and almost 80% have been attended to, there is no need to drag the strike anymore.
“It is unreasonable for the strike to be lingering seeing as the government has worked towards fulfilling most of the demands.”
ASUU had faulted the government for failing to meet some lingering demands which led to the suspension of its strike in 2020.
The union blamed the government for the failure to release revitalization funds for universities, the failure to release the white paper report of the visitation panel to universities, and failure to deploy the University Transparency Accountability System to pay salaries and allowances of lecturers.
Other demands include renegotiating the ASUU-FG 2009 agreement and ending the proliferation of universities by state governments and lawmakers.
Speaking with our correspondent in Abuja, a member of NEC who pleaded anonymity said, “The strike has been extended, and the leadership has decentralized the communication channel. We have received mandates to engage more with the media and the public to educate them on the struggles of ASUU”.
The strike by the union entered its 196th day today (Monday).
Earlier: ASUU NEC Set to Meet on Sunday to Decide Strike Continuation
The National Executive Council of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will meet on Sunday, August 28, 2022, to decide on whether to suspend or continue with the ongoing industrial action at its national headquarters at the University of Abuja.
This was revealed by a member of the council who spoke to a news outlet. According to the source, the meeting was necessitated due to the four weeks ultimatum the union had given to the government which expires on August 28.
He explained that whatever decisions will be taken will be based on the results of the state congresses held across various zones
When asked if the union will consider calling off the strike, the source asked, “Does it look like the government wants to end the strike?”
Earlier: ASUU Must Compensate Students for Wasted Time – Minister of Education
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, on Thursday, said it is the responsibility of the Academic Staff Union of Universities to compensate students for the time wasted during the six-month strike, not the Federal Government.
He also said the government will not concede to the union’s demand to pay lecturers their emoluments for the six months of no academic activities.
Adamu suggested that the affected students should “take ASUU to court” to claim damages incurred over the strike period.
The Education minister said this at the 47th Session of the State House Ministerial Briefing organised by the Presidential Communications Team at the Aso Rock Villa, Abuja.
According to him, the federal government bears no liability to compensate millions of students grounded for six months over lost time.
He also said if the students are determined to get compensated, they should take ASUU to court.
ASUU Releases Press Release
Earlier: ASUU-FG Meeting Ends in Deadlock Again
The meeting between the Federal Government and executive members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has ended in deadlock.
Stakeholders at the meeting which involved the professor Nimi Briggs led committee and ASUU officials failed to reach any meaningful resolution after the meeting which lasted several hours at the University of Abuja campus.
A source privy to the meeting noted that the Nimi Briggs committee failed to come with any commitment to resolve the strike rather was appealing to the union to suspend the strike.
Other unions also engaged in strike include the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Non Academic Staff Union of University and Allied Institutions (NASU) and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT).
There were initial signs that all the parties involved in the stalemate that has lasted for over six months were ready to come to a compromise, since the President had mandated the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu to intervene within two weeks.
DAILY INDEPENDENT however gathered that some of the demands which ASUU insists must be met may be tabled for extensive deliberations at Wednesday’s Federal Executive Council meeting usually presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Recall that while ASUU insists on continuation of its indefinite strike with frequent reviews to elongate the action, a situation that appeals to be causing the Federal Government serious embarrassment.
The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo had in a recent chat with reporters, called the bluff of ASUU saying the government was not in a position to borrow over N1trillion to settle the lecturers.
Recall also that ASUU recently announced an extension of their strike action by another four weeks, further dimming hopes of students to return to classrooms.
This is coming as the roll-over strike expired on July 31, 2022, a development that may have further compounded the woes of university undergraduates.
ASUU President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, had disclosed the union’s decision, in a press statement titled, “Review Of The Roll-over Strike.”
He said the National Executive Council (NEC) of the Union took the decision after extensive deliberations and taking cognisance of government’s past failures to abide by its own timelines in addressing issues raised in the 2020 FGN/ASUU Memorandum of Action (MoA).
Osodeke said NEC resolved that the strike be rolled over for four weeks to give government more time to satisfactorily resolve all the outstanding issues.
The role-over strike action, according to him, is with effect from 12.01a.m. on Monday, August 14, 2022.
The NEC meeting took place against the backdrop of government’s obligations as spelt out in the Memorandum of Action (MoA) it signed with ASUU on December 23, 2020.
NEC recalled that government’s failure to conclude the process of renegotiating the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, deployment of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) payment platform, pay outstanding arrears of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), release agreed sum of money for the revitalization of public universities (Federal and States), address proliferation and governance issues in State Universities, settle promotion arrears, release withheld salaries of academics, and pay outstanding third-party deductions, led to the initial declaration of the roll-over strike on February 14, 2022.
ASUU NEC also viewed with seriousness the recent directive given by the President and Visitor to all Federal Universities that the Minister of Education, in consultation with other government officials, should resolve the lingering crisis and report to him within two weeks.
The Union wondered why it had taken five full months and needless muscle-flexing for government to come to the realisation of the need for honest engagement.
He said, “NEC acknowledged the growing understanding of the issues and the groundswell of support for the Union’s principled demand for a globally competitive university education in Nigeria. Nigerian universities must not be reduced to constituency projects that merely exist on paper and our scholars must be incentivised to stay back and do what they know best, here in Nigeria.
“NEC appreciated the historic nationwide protest of 26th and 27th July, 2022 organised by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in collaboration with Civil Society Organisations (CSO) to further create awareness on the antics of the Nigerian ruling class to destroy public education. ASUU renews its commitment to the struggles of NLC in championing the cause of the working and suffering Nigerians.
“NEC observed that non-signing of the draft renegotiated 2009 FGN-ASUU Agreement more than one month after it was concluded by Professor Nimi Briggs-led Committee is further tasking the patience of ASUU members nationwide.
“NEC further observed that the on-going trial of the suspended Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), Mr. Ahmed Idris, on allegation of monumental fraud has vindicated ASUU’s rejection of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information (IPPIS). The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is enjoined to release reports of the latest tests on the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) vis-à-vis IPPIS without further delay. ASUU shall resist any attempt to truncate the deployment of UTAS with all legitimate means available to the Union.
“NEC noted that cumulative indifference by the political class gave vent to pervasive atmosphere of insecurity which now threatens seamless provision of educational services in the country. The unceremonious closure of educational institutions in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), following the recent attack on Presidential Guards, betrays a panicky measure to addressing a malignant ailment. Nothing short of a comprehensive overhaul of the security architecture of the country will sustainably address the problem.
“Following extensive deliberations and taking cognisance of Government’s past failures to abide by its own timelines in addressing issues raised in the 2020 FGN/ASUU Memorandum of Action (MoA), NEC resolved that the strike be rolled over for four weeks to give Government more time to satisfactorily resolve all the outstanding issues. The role-over strike action is with effect from 12.01a.m. on Monday, 14 August, 2022.”
Source: The Independent
Earlier: ASUU-FG Meets Today
The national president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, has said the union will have a meeting with the Federal Government to address its ongoing strike action, today.
The PUNCH had reported that since the end of the renegotiation meeting led by Prof. Nimi Briggs, the government had not made effort to discuss their decision with the union’s executives.
Likewise, after the submission of the ASUU report by the Briggs committee, the president gave the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu a two-week ultimatum to address the demands of ASUU.
However, the two weeks elapsed three weeks ago, yet, nothing was done to forestall an extension of the strike by one month strike, which started on August 1, 2022.
As such, Osodeke who appeared on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme, monitored by The PUNCH on Monday, said the union was willing to call off the strike if the Federal Government agreed to its demands at today’s meeting.
He said, “If we go into that meeting tomorrow and the government says, what you have bargained for, we are willing to sign, the strike will be called off.”
In an earlier interview, Osodeke condemned the fraudulent activities which the government used the university unions rejected Integrated Payroll and Personnel information system to commit.
He said, ‘’We have been shouting all along that IPPIS is a fraud, we have told them that for 16 years they siphoned our money with IPPIS, they punished our members because of it. Now, they know, some foreign bodies forced it on the people.’’
ASUU commenced its ongoing strike on February 14, 2022, after the Federal Government refused to meet some of its demands including, the release of revitalisation funds for universities, renegotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU agreement, release of earned allowances for university lecturers, and deployment of the UTAS payment platform for the payment of salaries and allowances of university lecturers.
Earlier: Again, ASUU Rolls Over Strike By 4-Weeks
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has extended the ongoing strike action by 4 weeks. This was contained in a press release made available by the union after its meeting on July 31st, 2022. The details of the press release is as follows;
“An emergency meeting of the National Executive Council of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) held at the Comrade Festus Iyayi National Secretariat, University of Abuja, Abuja, on Sunday, 31 July, 2022. The meeting was called to review developments since NEC’s resolution to extend its roll-over strike action by another 12 weeks with effect from 9th May, 2022.
2. The NEC meeting took place against the backdrop of government’s obligations as spelt out in the Memorandum of Action (MoA) it signed with ASUU on 23rd December 2020. Specifically, NEC recalled that government’s failure to conclude the process of renegotiating the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, deploy the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), pay outstanding arrears of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), release agreed sum of money for the revitalization of public universities (Federal and States), address proliferation and governance issues in State Universities, settle promotion arrears, release withheld salaries of academics, and pay outstanding third-party deductions led to the initial declaration of the roll-over strike on 14th February, 2022.
3. NEC viewed with seriousness the recent directive given by the President and Visitor to all Federal Universities that the Minister of Education, in consultation with other government officials, should resolve the lingering crisis and report to him within two weeks. The Union wonders why it had taken five full months and needless muscle-flexing for government to come to the realisation of the need for honest engagement.
4. NEC acknowledged the growing understanding of the issues and the groundswell of support for the Union’s principled demand for a globally competitive university education in Nigeria. Nigerian universities must not be reduced to constituency projects that merely exist on paper and our scholars must be incentivised to stay back and do what they know best, here in Nigeria.
5. NEC appreciated the historic nationwide protest of 26th and 27th July, 2022 organised by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in collaboration with Civil Society Organisations (CSO) to further create awareness on the antics of the Nigerian ruling class to destroy public education. ASUU renews its commitment to the struggles of NLC in championing the cause of the working and suffering Nigerians.
6. NEC observed that non-signing of the draft renegotiated 2009 FGN-ASUU Agreement more than one month after it was concluded by Professor Nimi Briggs-led Committee is further tasking the patience of ASUU members nationwide.
7. NEC further observed that the on-going trial of the suspended Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), Mr. Ahmed Idris, on allegation of monumental fraud has vindicated ASUU’s rejection of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information (IPPIS). The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is enjoined to release reports of the latest tests on the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) vis-à-vis IPPIS without further delay. ASUU shall resist any attempt to truncate the deployment of UTAS with all legitimate means available to the Union.
8. NEC noted that cumulative indifference by the political class gave vent to pervasive atmosphere of insecurity which now threatens seamless provision of educational services in the country. The unceremonious closure of educational institutions in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), following the recent attack on Presidential Guards, betrays a panicky measure to addressing a malignant ailment. Nothing short of a comprehensive overhaul of the security architecture of the country will sustainably address the problem.
Following extensive deliberations and taking cognisance of Government’s past failures to abide by its on timelines in addressing imus raised in the 2020 FCN/ASUU Memorandum of Action (MoA), NEC resolved that the strike be rolled over for four weeks to give Government more time to satisfactorily resolve all the standing issues. The role-over strike action is with effect from 12:01am on Monday, 1 August, 2002.
Earlier: ASUU Strike Protest Intensifies As NLC Leads Protest in Abuja
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and its affiliate unions on Wednesday in Abuja continued their solidarity protest in support of the five-month strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
The NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, and the presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, Omoyele Sowore, among others are currently leading the Day 2 protest in solidarity with ASUU in Abuja.
The PUNCH had reported the unions defied warnings by the Federal Government and took to the streets of major cities in the country on Tuesday to protest against the failure of the Federal Government to resolve the five-month strike by ASUU
Specifically, the NLC said the money the two major political parties – the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party – generated from the sale of forms to aspirants could address ASUU’s demands.
The university lecturers had shut down public institutions on February 14 over the inability of the Federal Government to implement the agreements it made with ASUU in 2009 as well as the refusal of the current administration to exempt lecturers from the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System.
ASUU had also asked the government to increase funding of tertiary institutions and pay outstanding allowances.
But on Wednesday, the protesters converged at the Unity Fountain and continued with the two-day protest in Abuja over the prolonged strike by university workers across the country.
This comes a day after a similar demonstration was held in various states of the Federation, except for the Federal Capital Territory.
The protest began at about 9:30 am after members of the NLC leadership and leaders of various affiliated unions, as well as members converged on the Unity Fountain in the nation’s capital.
Among those physically present were Wabba, Sowore, ASUU President, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, and the immediate past President of ASUU, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, among others.
PUNCH Metro observed a heavy security presence at the venue of the protest comprising officers of the Nigeria Police, DSS, NSCDC, among others.
Our correspondent gathered that the protesters planned to march down to the National Assembly where the NLC president would deliver a message from the labour unions to lawmakers.
Source: The PUNCH
Earlier: NLC to Embark on Two-day Nationwide Protest from July 26th
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has disclosed plans to embark on a two-day nationwide protest on July 26, 2022 in solidarity with the striking members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and other unions in the public universities.
This was made known in a circular dated July 15, 2022 which was signed by the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba; and General Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja, and titled, “National protest to get our children back to school.”
According to the circular, the protest would be held on July 26 and 27 at all state capitals and the Federal Capital Territory.
The protests in states are expected to take off from NLC state secretariats while that of Abuja will take off from the Labour House, Abuja.
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Police Force says it is advisable for those planning protest to inform the police so that security can be provided for them. The Force Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, disclosed this in an interview.
Responding to enquiries on whether the NLC had informed the police of the planned protest, Adejobi said, “I can’t say if the NLC has notified us or not, I have been away in Osun. If they have informed us, we will definitely deploy our men to ensure their safety and also prevent hoodlums from infiltrating them. If they have written to the IGP, he must have acted on it but like I said, I’ve been away.
ASUU has been on strike since February 14th, 2022. The union had accused the government of failing to implement the Memorandum of Understanding and Memorandum of Action signed between both parties.
ASUU Strike: Enough is Enough, Buhari Warns Striking Lecturers
The President, Muhammadu Buhari, on Monday, bemoaned the action of the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) for not calling off its industrial action, saying enough is enough for keeping students at home.
He said this on Monday in Daura, Katsina State, when he received some governors of the All Progressives Congress, legislators, and other political leaders at his residence.
The PUNCH reports the ASUU strike has entered its fifth month, with resumption not in sight as the lecturers are yet to shift grounds on their demands.
Buhari urged the lecturers to reconsider their stance on the prolonged strike, noting that the crisis would have generational consequences on families, the educational system, and the future development of the country.
The President said the strike was taking a toll on the psychology of parents, students, and other stakeholders.
He noted that the future of the country was resting on the quality of educational institutions and education. While assuring that the government understood the union’s position, he urged that negotiations should continue while students return to classes.
A statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, quoted him as saying, “We hope that ASUU will sympathise with the people on the prolonged strike. Truly, enough is enough for keeping students at home. Don’t hurt the next generation for goodness sake.”
Buhari asked all well-meaning Nigerians, especially those close to the leaders and members of the union, to wade in on the matter and persuade the lecturers to resume.
The President noted that students from Nigerian universities would experience challenges competing with counterparts in a highly connected and technology-driven workspace, and keeping them at home only deprived them of time, skill, and opportunities to be relevant on the global stage.
He said, “Colonial type education was geared towards producing workers in government. Those jobs are no longer there. Our young people should get education to prepare them for self-employment. Now education is for the sake of education.
“Through technology, we are much more efficient. We should encourage our children to get education, not only to look for government jobs.”
“By this time next year, I would have made the most out of the two terms, and in the remaining months I will do my best.”
“If you are greedy, you won’t look around to see what is happening with those who are less endowed,’’ he added.
The President also told the governors and political leaders that the reason he had not been to his home in Daura for a long time was because of his work as the President.
“The observation that I abandoned my base was made by the Emir of Daura, Dr. Faruk Faruk, at the Eid prayer ground. He held the microphone and told everyone that the last time I was in Daura was during the Eid-el-Kabir of 2021.
“In 10 to 11 months, I will come here. I have a better house in Kaduna, but it is too close to Abuja,’’ he said.
The President explained that the schedule of work was much, saying he recently had to sympathise with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, who had to be away most of the time from his family.
He admonished the APC stalwarts to keep working for the good of the people and the country, saying “we are a lucky people, and we need to reflect more on where we are coming from.
“I wish the person who is coming after me the very best.”
Source: PUNCH Newspaper
Earlier: ASUU Strike Will Soon End – FG
The Newly appointed Minister of State for Education, Hon. Goodluck Opiah, has assured that the Muhammadu Buhari administration is committed to ending the ongoing strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and get the students back to school soon.
Opiah gave the assurance in Owerri while fielding questions from journalists during a reception organized in his honour by his friends.
He said, “I can assure you that government is very concerned about the situation. Even as I speak to you now, a lot of thinking, a lot of discussions and meetings are going on with a view to resolving the matter as quickly as possible. I am hopeful that the disagreement between government and ASUU will be resolved soon so that our children can go back to school”.
He emphasised that the challenges in the education sector are surmountable adding that the federal government is not relenting in finding solutions and ending ASUU strike.
The former Imo speaker expressed optimism to make impacts in the ministry and the education sector working with the minister of education, Mallam Adamu Adamu.
He said, “I am prepared to make impacts in the ministry and the education sector working with the Minister, Mallam Adamu Adamu. Where there are challenges there must be solutions. And I can assure you that we will find the solution and our children will go back to school soon”.
Earlier: ASUU Strike Will End Soon – Minister of Labour
The Federal Government on Wednesday said the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) would soon be called off.
This was as it said there are no plans to establish an alternative payment table for all the labour unions in tertiary institutions.
Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, disclosed this while briefing State House Correspondents at the end of the weekly Federal Executive Council meeting presided over by the President Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) at the Council Chambers of the presidential villa, Abuja.
Despite four months into the strike already, Ngige assured Nigerians that efforts were underway to resolve the ongoing dispute largely fueled by payment platforms.
ASUU, which grounded academic activities in Nigerian universities since February 14, 2022, had insisted on the use of its own generated payment platform, University Transparency and Accountability Solution.
It premised its demand on claims that the government-backed Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System was shortchanging its members.
However, the Federal Government, last March claimed that UTAS was unfit for wide-scale use as it failed three integrity tests.
Aside from UTAS, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities and Non-Academic Staff Union of Allied and Educational Institutions also proposed their payment platform: Universities Peculiar Personnel Payroll System.
Ngige argued that the Federal Government was indeed engaging with ASUU, despite notions that it has been snubbing the union.
Earlier: ASUU Strike Will Be Called Off Next Week – Minister of Education
The Minister of Education, Prof. Adamu Adamu, has stated that the ongoing industrial action embarked upon by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will be called off within the next one week.
The minister made the disclosure in Abuja while appearing before the Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFund. According to Adamu, the executive arm of government had commenced plans to ensure that it honours the agreement between the federal government and ASUU.
The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Jibrin Barau, commended the Minister for efforts made by his Ministry so far towards ensuring that the situation is resolved and the strike action called off.
Earlier: Renegotiation of 2009 Agreement At Advanced Stage – ASUU
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said the renegotiation of the 2009 agreement between the Federal Government and the union has reached an advanced stage.
The union encouraged its members to remain focused to the end “of the struggle.”
The union made this known in a memo titled, “Strike bulletin number 6”, signed by its National President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, and made available to all branches of the union.
Our correspondent obtained a copy of the memo on Sunday.
Osodeke, in the memo, noted that the union had a total of five meetings with the representatives of the Federal Government, while two meetings were held with the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.
The memo read in part, “Our iron-cast resolve has forced the government to sit down and negotiate with us.
“We have had five meetings with the Federal Government team and two meetings with the Minister of Education.
“The renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement is progressing smoothly and has reached an advanced stage. However, we must remain focused to the end of this struggle.
“The University Transparency and Accountability Solution has been tested for the third time. So far, the National Information Technology Development Agency has tested UTAS and University Peculiar Personnel and Payroll System, and will start testing the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System by next week. We are undeterred by the antics of some government officials in this respect.
“It is clear that hunger, misinformation, distortion of facts, intimidation and other sundry acts of arm-twisting have failed to break our resolve to date; they should not break us now.
“Ignore fake news and divisive information emanating from social media and a section of the press. If in doubt over any issue, contact your chairperson for correct information.
“We are at the threshold of victory. Let us keep faith with the union. A people united can never be defeated.”
So far under the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), schools have been shut down for no fewer than 13 months.
Education rights groups such as Reform Education Nigeria and Education Rights Campaign have called for an increase in funding of the nation’s tertiary education.
Earlier: ASUU’s Meeting With FG Was Fair As Union Awaits Response From Government
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said it is awaiting the response of the Federal Government on its demands. This was disclosed by the President of ASUU, Emmanuel Osodeke after the meeting with the Federal Government’s renegotiation committee headed by Prof. Nimi Briggs on Monday.
According to the ASUU president, the meeting was fair. He added that the union is expecting the government to respond to the issues they discussed with the committee.
When asked if ASUU would call the strike off soon since it had a fair deliberation with Briggs committee, Osodeke said, ‘‘I don’t know if we are calling off the strike soon. We are waiting for the final response from the government.
“It is a committee of different government agencies. They need to go back to their principal and look at what we agreed on and then get back to us. When they respond to us, we will give you full details.”
“They will call us when they are ready for another meeting, but none for now. We have had about three meetings with them.’’
Strike: ASUU, FG Holds Meeting Today
The Federal Government will today meet with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) while the Joint Action Committee of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Allied Institutions (NASU) would have their meeting on Friday with the FG. The meetings are geared towards resolving the ongoing strike by the various unions.
Confirming this, the union’s National President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, in an interview, said that the meetings would resume this week. We are resuming the meeting this week and we have an invitation this week. The renegotiation meeting will only end if we have called off the strike.”
Similarly, the Joint Action Committee of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Allied Institutions’ National President, Mr Ibrahim Mohammed, told our correspondent that SSANU’s meeting would be on Friday.
“Yes, we are meeting with the FG on Friday,” he said.
Earlier: We’ve Made Progress With FG, Strike May End Soon – ASUU President
The president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, has disclosed that the warning strike embarked upon by the union since February 14, would soon come to an end. He made this known while speaking on the Human Rights Radio, producers of the popular national radio/TV programme, Brekete Family Show.
According to him, the minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige contributed to making the strike last this long as he took over and politicised the strike. But now that the minister of education is handling it, both parties are making progress.
“I hope it continues this way and within a short time, God helping, and if there are no third parties, we believe that this thing will be resolved very soon.” He added.
Meanwhile, Osodeke has pleaded with Nigerian students to continue to support the union in the struggle to improve the university system in the country and ensure they vote against politicians whose children are not in Nigerian universities and do not have their medical files in Nigerian hospitals.
Speaking on the issue of Joint Admissions And Matriculations Board (JAMB), collecting money from students while universities remained closed, he said the Board’s power needs to be reduced.
“JAMB is the one admitting, universities have lost it completely. Rather than universities doing admission it is done by JAMB and all they want is to recover money and charge all sorts of things, now returning money to federation accounts.
“Should the money collected from students as JAMB fee be a source of revenue for Nigeria as a country? Is that right? There is a need to look at JAMB law to remove all this power from JAMB, remove this money collection from JAMB and let every university admit their students and monitor them by NUC which is the regulatory body.
“Nigeria needs to grow up and look at what the world is doing, there is no country in the world where you have JAMB, made up of non-academics admitting students for all the Universities in the country,” he added.
Earlier: FG Makes Move to End ASUU, ASUP Strikes, Begins Payment of Arrears
In a bid to end the industrial actions by both the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), the Federal Government has commenced the payment of minimum wage arrears, which it owed the lecturers.
The National President of ASUP, Dr. Anderson Ezeibe, and the Chairman, ASUU FUTMinna, Dr. Gbolahan Bolarin, confirmed this in separate interviews with our PUNCH correspondent in Abuja on Thursday.
Recall the the two unions are currently on strike following the inability of the government to meet their demands including the payment of minimum wage arrears and release of revitalisation funds, among others.
While ASUU commenced its strike on February 14, 2022, ASUP is currently on an initial two-week warning strike.
Confirming the payment on Thursday, Ezeibe, however, said that was just the beginning.
He said, “The government has started responding. They just started paying the salary/minimum wage arrears, the one they have refused to pay.
“However, that is just one of the demands, so we have not reached anywhere. They have not attended to the others, but I can confirm that people have started receiving alerts of the arrears owed.”
Also, Bolarin, said, “Some of my members got alert of their minimum wage arrears; their salaries are still pending.”
Source: The Punch
Earlier: No Agreement With Federal Govt to End Strike
Striking Academic Staff Union of Universities and the Joint Action Committee of the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational (NASU) and Associated Institutions and Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) have said the Federal Government did not reach a strong agreement with them that can lead to calling off the industrial actions.
According to the national leaders of the union, the Federal Government and all stakeholders in the education sector and religious leaders had a meeting with the four unions but no strong agreements were reached.
The president of ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke stated that the claim of Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, over the weekend that the unions would call off the ongoing strike this week was a political statement.
He said, “We are not aware that we are calling off the strike. We met but there was nothing concrete between us and the government. Like we said before, we do not want promises, we want actions, if they show action and implement all the issues, we will go to our members, but knowing their antecedents, we know they will not do anything.
“They promised us since December 2020 and it is going to a year and a half, they have not done anything. We are waiting for them.
“As far as we are concerned, only when they sign our agreements, accept UTAS, release EAA and revitalisation funds will we call the strikes off.”
Meanwhile, It was gathered that the National Youth Service Corps, JAMB and universities will meet later to harmonise timetable and rollout calendar for the mobilisation of graduates for the mandatory National Youth Service and 2022 admissions following the disruption in the academic calendar as a result of the ongoing industrial actions.
Earlier: Buhari Begs ASUU to Call off Strike
His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari has appealed to members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off their strike in the interest of students.
The President made the appeal at the 19th National Productivity Day Celebration and Conferment of National Productivity Order of Merit Award at the State House Conference Centre, Abuja.
The President recalled his February 1 directive to his Chief of Staff, Ibrahim Gambari, Ministers of Education as well as those of Labour and Employment, Adamu Adamu and Chris Ngige respectively to address the concerns of the striking aggrieved lecturers.
ASUU, in a statement on Monday, said since the President’s directive was issued, no meeting had been held to resolve the conflicts.
ASUU said failure of the government to show concern about its demands forced it to extend the three-month-old strike by another three months.
The President also appealed to the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), to exercise patience as government works to resolve the crisis.
Earlier: ASUU Extends Strike by 12 Weeks
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has rolled over its ongoing strike for another 12 weeks.
A statement signed by ASUU president, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, said this was to give the government enough time to satisfactorily resolve all the outstanding issues.
The union said this at its ongoing meeting in Abuja.
It also stated that the roll-over strike was effective from 12.01 am, May 8, 2021.
ASUU said it took this decision after its National Executive Council meeting which started on Sunday night at the Comrade Festus Iyayi National Secretariat, University of Abuja.
Earlier: ASUU Threatens to Extend Strike Indefinitely As Warning Strike Ends, Says FG Not Serious
The Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU) has threatened to extend the ongoing strike indefinitely.
The union said this at its ongoing meeting in Abuja.
Accusing the Federal Government of being unserious, the union promised to intimate Nigerians on the outcome of its meeting.
ASUU had on Monday, February 14, 2022, announced a four-week total and comprehensive warning strike following the inability of the union and the Federal Government to reach common ground on the demands of university lecturers.
Some of ASUU’s demands include the release of revitalization funds for universities, renegotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU agreement, release of earned allowances for university lecturers, and deployment of the UTAS payment platform for the payment of salaries and allowances of university lecturers.
Following the expiration of the initial four weeks of the warning strike, the union had gone ahead to declare another eight weeks saying that it was giving the government more time to attend to its needs.
Earlier: ASUU and Federal Govt to Resume Talks Next Week
The Federal Government and the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) would resume talks next week with a view to ending the prolonged closure of public universities.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige said this at a meeting between the government side and the striking National Association of Academic Technologists.
Ngige noted the multiple industrial disputes in the education sector could have been averted if the unions in the sector took advantage of his open door policy like the health unions, which culminated in the peace currently enjoyed in the health sector.
According to a statement on Friday by the acting Head, Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Patience Onuobia, the minister, who also decried the rivalry between the education unions, made it clear that everybody is important in the university system.
He assured that the government was tackling all the disputes in education sector holistically, knowing fully well that none of the unions could function effectively without the other union.
He said, “If you are from any union, you don’t need to book appointment to see me. The doctors started using that advantage, JOHESU also did the same. That is why the health sector is quiet. But the education unions don’t take advantage of my open door policy.
“We don’t have to cry over spilt milk. Let us look at your issues to see the ones we can handle immediately, the ones we can do in the medium term and the ones we can do in the long term. There are certain ones that are over and above me that are not in my hands to do.
“My job is to prepare an agreement after conciliation on what you have agreed with your employers, the Federal Ministry of Education, put timelines and monitor them, to see whether the results will be there.
“As a conciliator, I manage you people in measured steps. That is why I want to take all of you holistically and I ask for your cooperation. When I finish with you today, I will continue with ASUU next week. I have done NASU and SSANU yesterday and they were happy. I want you people to be happy as we leave here.”
He, however, pointed out that the renegotiation of the 2009 agreement would not be immediate because the education ministry had put in place a committee to handle it.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Andrew Adejo re-emphasised that all the issues in dispute were basically economic, in the sense that everybody wants improved conditions of service.
Earlier: Buhari Approves Funds for Tertiary Institutions Amid ASUU Strike
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the 2022 disbursement proposals and guidelines for public higher institutions across the country.
The Executive Secretary of Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Arch. Sunday Echono, disclosed this while receiving the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (CVCNU) in Abuja on Thursday, DailyTrust reports.
The money was approved amid the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Echono said the meeting of all beneficiary institutions will be held by next week to interact further and brief on the proposed reforms that have been approved for implementation.
He assured the vice chancellors of TeFund’s commitment to sustain the ongoing reforms in the sector, with increased emphasis on the content of its interventions particularly in the areas of research, ICT and in the areas of encouraging a reading culture in our society through publication of books.
“We are confident that once this is accomplished it will not only provide open learning resources for researchers and students who want to access previous works done in their respective areas of research but also promote a culture of academic excellence,” he said.
Echono noted that one of the problems of Nigeria’s education is the quality of graduates, particularly the quality of thesis, saying, “Many students plagiarize peoples work”.
“We believe in anti-plagiarism device as you have developed will go a long way in dictating this and ensuring compliance. Indeed, we have adopted a policy in TETFund that going forward, all proposals coming to us must go through your system and receive certification that it has passed a minimum standard that is required and for all publishers and authors before it can benefit from our support.”
He also lamented the amount of resources being spent in sending children abroad for studies, urging universities, especially private ones to create a niche and compete with foreign universities that are attracting students in order to save cost.
Earlier, the chairman of the CVC, Prof Samuel Gowon Edoumiekumo, said the CVCNU is working closely with the TetFund to deploy the thesis digitisation for Nigerian tertiary institutions.
Earlier: FG Denies Knowing Why ASUU Is On Strike
The Federal government disclosed that it is still not aware of the reasons behind the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
This was as it said universities founded and being funded by state governments have no business joining federal universities on strike, if the cause of the strike bothered on issues the union claimed.
Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, speaking in Abuja, also told the union that it lacked basic rights to dictate to the government how salaries of members who he noted, were employees, should be paid by the government being their employer
He said the federal government has limited resources and cannot borrow money to pay ASUU, saying the government can only borrow money to fund infrastructures like railways and other critical infrastructure where it gets returns from.
“Why they (ASUU) have chosen to go on strike is something that neither you nor I can explain”,he told reporters while answering questions on the federal government and ASUU face-off.
“In the school system,we have about 2.6 million Nigerian undergraduates in the nearly 200 universities across Nigeria. The federal government owns less than 50 of these universities. State governments own nearly 50 of them as well whereas private people,private organisations,faith based organisations own over 100 of them.
“The only part where children are not in school at the moment are the ones that belong to the federal government. So there is no need for any other university to be at home,” he said.
Nwajiuba explained that, “the engagement with Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has been a long drawn one, based on the 2009 agreement that was signed before we came into government.
“It is our duty as government to give life to those agreement which ASUU rightly seeks to make sure that the universities that the federal government owns are properly funded.
“The federal government’s funding is very limited and because of the additional challenges of security, it had to repeatedly borrow money to finance projects. This same borrowing is not available to build social infrastructure, it’s only available to build infrastructure that government can get return from, like railways.
“To borrow and pay people is normally not what World Bank or other financial institutions borrow money for. However, the federal government has continued to address this by paying the salaries that are due.”
He said the university lecturers cannot continue to dictate to the government how their salaries should be paid.
Earlier: Pay Us N200bn from N4trn Fuel Subsidy to Return to School – ASUU
The President of the Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU), Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke has said the federal government has not demonstrated readiness to address the prolonged ASUU strike that has forced Nigerian students in public tertiary institutions at home.
He said the government has addressed the issue of fuel subsidy with a budget of 4 trillion while it ignored the addressing issues of her university education.
Prof. Osodoke said if the government took only N200bn from the N4 trillion budget for subsidy it would still have a whopping N3.8 trillion to address the matter where the University is challenged would come up with solutions to it.
Osodeke said this on Channels TV Sunrise show, and called on Nigeria government to prioritize education to fuel subsidy, which he pointed out the Nigerian intelligentsia in the universities can address.
He said that the government should remove N200m from the N4 trillion it has for fuel subsidy, to boost the infrastructure deficit of Nigerian Universities.
According to him, the Nigerian academic intelligentia can provide all the solutions needed to boost the country as he called on the government to challenge Nigerian University lecturers to provide solutions to nagging issues it has identified.
He argued that the it took the Nigerian University only three months to locally produce University Transparent and Accountability Solution (UTAS) which performed at 97.3 percent to replace the foreign Integrated Payroll Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
He said while huge resources was paid for IPPIS such funds would have served the Nigerian University and challenged the government to always task the Nigerian Universities for solutions to identified challenges.
According to him, the Nigerian University can provide a refinery within three years, as part of measures to rid the nation of the loss incurred on subsidy.
Professor Osodeke argued that ” it is always very funny, that the Government, who cannot raise 200 billion to revamp all Nigeria universities annually, to world standards.
“The same government can raise N4 trillion Naira for fuel subsidies. Fuel subsidy and Nigerian education which is more important to any country that wants to move forward?
“You can raise a budget to make N4 trillion for subsidies a year, but you cannot raise N200bn to fund your education where you don’t have the infrastructure.
“You can spend N228 billion to feed children in primary or secondary schools. But you cannot raise this fund for your university, it is an issue of priority. That is the problem.
“If you remove N200m from N4 trillion, to fund your universities, you still have N3.8trillion for fuel subsidy.
Earlier: Outcome of the April 11th Meeting Between FG and ASUU
The Federal Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige met with members of the 2009 FG and university-based unions’ renegotiation committee on Monday, April 11 in Abuja over the ongoing strike embarked by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Speaking during the meeting, the minister stated that the federal government is in support of the renegotiation of the welfare package for university workers, but was displeased with ASUU’s obsession with strikes whenever it has a disagreement with the government.
He pleaded with the renegotiation committee to ensure that it concludes its assignment within six weeks as provided in the Memorandum of Action with the unions.
The Minister who advised the leadership of ASUU to find a better way of pressurizing the Federal Ministry of Education and the National Universities Commission on implementing agreements reached, further advised the union to keep bombarding the minister of education, Adamu Adamu, until there is a positive change.
Earlier: Union Lists Conditions for Schools Resumption
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Abuja zone has maintained that the only condition for calling off the ongoing strike action is when the renegotiated 2019 agreement is signed and implemented, and the deployment of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS).
The zone comprising the Federal University of Lafia, Federal University of Technology Minna, Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, and the University of Abuja, made the disclosure through its coordinator, Dr Salawu Muhammed Lawal at a press conference held at UNIABUJA on Monday.
According to Lawal, ASUU members are ever ready to return to their duty post as soon as their demands are met by the Federal Government.
This comes after it was revealed that the union will be meeting with the Federal Government on April 11.
Earlier: ASUU, NASU, SSANU Are Wicked For Continuous Strike – Federal Govt
The Minister of State for Education, Mr. Emeka Nwajiuba, has condemned members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the Joint Action Committee of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions for embarking on strike, leading to a complete shutdown of higher institutions of learning.
The Minister during an interview described the unions’ continuous strike actions as an act of wickedness considering the fact that the government has agreed to their demands and would still pay them their entitlement.
He, however, applauded polytechnics and college of education workers who were willing to suspend their strike and continue working while negotiations are ongoing, saying ASUU and its counterparts were being mean and wicked, not just to the government, but to Nigerians as a whole.
ASUU’s strike has officially entered its 50th day today, April 5, 2022.
Earlier: ASUU Strike to continue for another two months – Official
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has extended its ongoing industrial action by another eight weeks, accusing the Nigerian government of insensitivity and peddling lies.
ASUU made the decision at a prolonged meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) which started on Sunday and ended early Monday morning.
The NEC meeting was held at the union’s national secretariat at the University of Abuja.
A member of the NEC who does not want to be quoted to avoid sanctions by the union, said a statement is currently being drafted by the leadership of ASUU and that as soon as it is ready, it will be distributed.
The source said: “Yes, we have extended the strike by eight weeks pending when the Nigerian government would find the university system worthy of the desired attention. A statement is currently being drafted to that effect. We will make it available soon.”
More details to come…
Earlier: FG Gives Committee 3 Months to Re-negotiate With ASUU
The Federal Government, yesterday inaugurated a seven-man committee to renegotiate the 2009 agreements it had with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and other unions.
Inaugurating the committee in Abuja, Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, urged the members to re-negotiate, in realistic and workable terms, the 2009 agreements with university-based unions.
The committee is chaired by the Pro-Chancellor, Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ndufu-Alike, Prof. Nimi Briggs.
Other members are the Pro-Chancellor, Federal University, Wukari, Lawrence Ngbale (representing North East); Pro-Chancellor, Federal University, Birnin Kebbi, Prof. Funmi Togunu-Bickersteth (South West) and Pro-Chancellor, Federal University, Lokoja, Sen, Chris Adighije (South East).
The Pro-Chancellor, Federal University of Technology, Minna, Prof. Olu Obafemi (represents North Central); Pro-Chancellor, Kano State University of Science and Technology, Prof. Zubairu Iliyasu (North West); and Pro-Chancellor, Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Matthew Seiyefa (South South).
Adamu recalled that the re-negotiation of the 2009 agreements between the Federal Government and university-based staff unions commenced on Monday, February 13, 2017.
“However, due to a number of unforeseen circumstances, including the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), the exercise has, unfortunately, dragged on till now. The earnest desire of every stakeholder in the Nigerian university system and, indeed, the nation at large is to conclude this re-negotiation exercise within the shortest possible period.
“Therefore, I wish to especially appeal to this re-constituted committee to double its effort towards concluding the assignment and producing realistic and workable draft agreements that would holistically tackle the challenges confronting the and reposition it to effectively play its very important role in national development.”
According to the minister, the committee will liaise and consult with relevant stakeholders to finalise the position of the Federal Government on the issues in the draft Federal Government/ASUU agreement.
He said the committee would also negotiate and recommend any other issue it deemed relevant to reposition the university system for global competitiveness, including submitting the draft agreements within three months from the date of inauguration.
Adamu added: “Indeed, your nomination to serve the Federal Government in this capacity is not unconnected with your track records of invaluable impact on the development and progress of the university system. Therefore, I have no reservation that you would conduct this all-important assignment with the seriousness and the urgency it deserves. This is, more so, considering the ongoing industrial action by one of the unions.”
Credit: The Guardian
Earlier: ASUU Vows Not to Renegotiate As FG Says It Doesn’t Have Funds to Meet Its Demands
The one-month warning strike embarked upon by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), may last longer than expected as the federal government has now revealed that it doesn’t have funds to meet some of the union’s demands.
Speaking during an interview on Thursday, March 3, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige said the N1.3 trillion revitalization fund ASUU is clamoring for was a promise made to the union by the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan when the country’s finances were stable, and they were able to pay only N200 billion borrowed from the coffers of TETFUND.
He explained that the current administration never promised to pay ASUU the remaining N1.1 trillion, and had told the union it cannot honor an agreement it wasn’t part of but promised to find a way to fund universities and revitalize infrastructure.
Ngige further revealed that the government was willing to renegotiate and has reconstituted a renegotiation team on the 2009 agreement. However, the union has vowed not to involve itself in any round of renegotiation saying it had since rounded off negotiations with the government concerning its demands.
Earlier: Student Group Demands Resignation of Education Minister, Threatens Total Shutdown of the Country
The Students’ wing of Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG), on Thursday, demanded the immediate resignation of Education Minister, Adamu Adamu, over his alleged failure to bring to an end the current strike by members of the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities.
According to the students, Federal Government seemed not to be bothered about their future and about the negative effects that strikes had been having on them. The students stated that the government, in particular the Minister of Education, lacks the political will, capacity and willingness to bring the matter to an end, as such he should resign with immediate effect.
The students’ wing of the Coalition declared that if the government fails to find an immediate solution to the strike, its members would collaborate with the National Association of Nigerian Students in its proposed ‘National Day of Action’, to ensure total shutdown of the country.
Excerpts of an address by their National Coordinator, Jamilu Charanchi reads, “The Students’ wing of the Coalition of Northern Groups is worried that the four-week warning strike declared by the Academic Staff Union of Universities is already in its third week, with no hope for a resolution in sight, while our universities remain shut. We are concerned at the frequency of the disruption of the Nigerian education system that keeps frustrating the ambitions and aspirations of the youths to acquire knowledge.
“Sadly, this strike is the second industrial action embarked on by ASUU in less than two years, and the 16th since the inception of the fourth republic democracy in 1999.
“Failure of the government to resolve the matter within the stipulated time, the CNG Students’ wing will join hands with NANS in ensuring total shutdown of the country.
“In line with the above, we hereby direct all National Excos, State structures, Campus structures, Faculty Senators and Departmental Ambassadors to commence massive public mobilisation in readiness for an impending National Day.”
Earlier: Ngige Gives Update on FG-ASUU Negotiation
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, has given an update over the ongoing negotiation between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). He gave the update while speaking to State House correspondents at the end of a meeting with the president.
He stated that the President after consultation with some stakeholders including the National Inter-Religious Council (NIREC) had mandated him to find a quick solution to the strike.
He said a meeting had been held with ASUU with another one planned for Tuesday, adding that the two areas that have not had issues properly analysed are earned allowances and revitalization, otherwise, timelines have been put on most of the other things.
He said a timeline had been given for the draft proposal the union has at the ministry of education for their conditions of service and wages to be concluded.
The minister said when the relevant committee headed by chair of pro-chancellors submits its report, it will be looked at in conjunction with the National Salaries and Wages Commission to make sure that the allowances so proposed do not run counter to government extant fixtures.
According to Ngige, the Federal Government had so far paid over N92 billion as earned allowances and revitalization fees to federal-owned universities across the country. He said this was part of the implementation of the 2020 December agreement reached with ASUU.
Regarding the introduction of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution payment platform as preferred by ASUU instead of the government’s Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, the minister said the matter would be revisited.
“UTAS, which the universities developed has been subjected to test by the body responsible for that, Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), which ran a user acceptance test also called integrity and vulnerability test, but in their report, they pointed out to ASUU, the areas of lapses in that platform, which will not make it usable as presently configured.
“But ASUU has written back to NITDA to say that some of those observations were not correct,” he said.
According to Ngige, arrangements have now been concluded for the technical teams of NITDA and ASUU to meet and jointly conduct or repeat the test on the UTAS platform, so as to find a solution to the impasse.
Earlier: Education Minister Meets With Protesting Students, After Initially Walking Out on Them
The Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu who had initially walked out on a meeting with students on Monday morning over what he reportedly described as rude conduct of the student leaders, later he met the leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) at the headquarters of the National Universities Commission (NUC).
He assured the protesters that the striking members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will soon return to the classrooms.
In a terse statement issued late Monday night by the director of press at the ministry, Ben Goong, the minister said the ongoing negotiation process has been fruitful “and is expected to lead to a quick return of the striking lecturers back to classes.”
The statement, which was shared with PREMIUM TIMES late Monday night, reads; “Education Minister Adamu Adamu met with NANS officials in Abuja in an effort to ease tension over the ongoing ASUU strike. The process is expected to lead to the resumption of academic activities on our campuses.”
However, the director did not give the details of the meeting with the student leaders.
The footage of the minister’s walk-out on the students by Channels Television, had earlier surfaced on the internet, as many Nigerians berated Mr Adamu for his “poor conduct.”
The minister was said to have expressed dissatisfaction with the way and manner he was spoken to by the NANS president, Sunday Asefon, who had reportedly accused the minister of feeling unconcerned about the plight of Nigerian students.
Mr Asefon, while addressing the minister on Monday, had said: “The key issue ASUU has continued to hammer on is the revitalisation of our institutions, which is important for every student to key into. But you cannot be discussing the revitalisation of our institution without Nigerian students being in that negotiation committee.
“Nigerian students want to be part of this committee. We want to really know what is going on between ASUU and the federal government…We are tired of the incessant strike in our education sector.
“Honourable Minister, we saw it on social media, you celebrated your son who graduated from a university outside this country. Our parents do not have that money to send us outside the country. But let us enjoy what we are paying for. We want adequate funding for education in this country.
“If our schools are not open, this will not be the last protest. This is not a threat – when we said we would be coming out, here we are. Today, Niger road is blocked, Benue is blocked, Adamawa is blocked. If care is not taken, this will be worse than EndSARS.”
Apparently angered by the issues raised, the minister reportedly told the protesting students that the only thing worthy of note in the issues raised was the inclusion of students in the negotiation process.
“Instead of coming here, you should have met your lecturers there. Perhaps the only point that you make that is worthy of attention is; you said students should be involved in this and I think, probably, this is a very good thing. And it is the only thing I am going to take out of all you have said here,” the minister reportedly said before stepping out of his conference room where he met with them.”
With the minister at the meeting were the executive secretary of NUC, Abdulrasheed Abubakar, and the registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Is-haq Oloyede, among other officials of the agencies under the education ministry.
However, later in the night, accompanied by the heads of some of the agencies under the education ministry including Messrs Abubakar and Oloyede, the minister returned to meet the angry students to seek their understanding.
According to the NANS president, the decision to agree to meet the minister was to resolve the lingering crisis so that the students could go back to school.
Mr Asefon, who spoke to our reporter on the phone on Tuesday morning, said; “The only thing we said was that we would not go back to that ministry of education. So they agreed to meet us at the NUC headquarters, where we again reiterated our demands.
“The minister showed us documents indicating efforts to address all the issues, and we insisted that if the strike is not called off before the one-month deadline, the #EndSars protest would be a child’s play.”
He said the minister pleaded for understanding and that the conciliation meeting would continue today towards ending the strike.
“He said the 2009 FGN-ASUU agreement was not sustainable but that a new workable agreement is being finalised for signature by both parties,” he added.
Earlier: FG and ASUU Meeting Ends, Strike Continues
The meeting between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has just ended.
The meeting which commenced around 1:00pm at the Minister’s Conference room has finally come to an end.
At the meeting the Academic Staff Union of Universities insisted to continue its strike unless the Federal Government meets all existing demands.
But the Federal Government on its part believes that the ongoing strike would be called off soon, saying it was taken aback by the renewed strike which university teachers embarked on February 14, 2022.
Addressing the resumed conciliation meeting with the union on Tuesday, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige said government was surprised ASUU negated the understanding and assurances it gave through the Nigerian Inter-Religious Council(NIREC) led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar and the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria , Rev. Supo Ayokunle.
According to the Minister who was in Botswana for the meeting of the African Regional Labour Administrative Centre(ARLAC) when ASUU declared action, said he thought the university teachers and their employer, the Ministry of Education would have resolved the areas of disputes within days.
“I sincerely thought ASUU and the Ministry of Education would have resolved the issues, which hopefully are not major areas of dispute, warranting industrial action. To my surprise , I came back , and the strike is still on. Be that as it may, it is the mandate of my Ministry to apprehend industrial disputes wherever they occur and we have apprehended this.
“ From this negotiation we are having today, ASUU will appreciate that government means no harm. This is because even if there are still lapses in implementation of agreement , they are not such that will lead to industrial action. To that extent , we have to do everything possible to resolve this.
But I must tell you that on the government side, they were taken by surprise in that before then, NIREC met with you(ASUU) and reported to the President. Having met with you (ASUU) and having given the details of their meeting with you, we sincerely hoped we won’t again take this route of industrial action. So, the government side is taken by surprise- Ministry of Education, Ministry of Finance and all are taken aback.”
Ngige, however, assured that the strike had been apprehended by his ministry and that the ongoing conciliation would prepare ground for an expanded meeting which will involve NIREC.
“It is my mandate to apprehend industrial disputes and this has been apprehended so we can discuss, and later expand to what is called tripartite plus meeting, involving members of NIREC who are top religious and traditional rulers, we cannot push aside. And that is as soon as we are done and agree on issues here.”
The minister expressed optimism that the strike would be called off soon to enable students go back to school.
“It should not be one month strike. In fact there is nothing like one month strike or warning strike in labour parlance. Strike is strike. We want this to end as soon as possible, as we sort out all grey areas in the agreement as the ILO Principles At Work allows for renegotiation of Collective Bargaining Agreement. So we go back to the draft agreement. We must avoid another situation where our children bear the brunt of two elephants fighting,” he added.
Earlier: FG Meets ASUU Today Over Strike Action
The Federal Government will on Tuesday meet the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to find an amicable solution to the contentious issues that made the university teachers down tools.
Recall that ASUU had declared a one-month warning strike starting from Monday, February 14 to press home their demands.
Both the federal government and ASUU have been trading blames since the later declared industrial action as each is accusing the other of insincerity.
However, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, who is the Conciliator-in-Chief of the Federal Government has scheduled to meet with the leadership of ASUU on Tuesday in his office.
This was disclosed by Mr Charles Akpan, Deputy Director/Head Press and Public Relations in the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
The letter read: “The Honorable Minister for Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige will be meeting with the Executive of Academic Staff Union of Universities ASUU and relevant Government Agencies.
The meeting is scheduled as follows:
Date: Tuesday, 22nd February 2022.
Time: 1 pm
Venue: Honorable Minister’s Conference room.”
Earlier: ASUU NEC Converges Today, to Meet FG
The National Executive Council of the Academic Staff of Universities (ASUU) will meet on Monday night.
Sources in the union revealed that after the meeting, NEC members will meet Federal Government officials later in the week.
Recall that ASUU had last week Monday declared a nationwide four-week roll-over strike after a two-day meeting at the University of Lagos, Akoka.
The union said it had no option but to embark on the strike, saying despite meeting with the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, on October 14, 2021, on issues, including funding for revitalisation of public universities, earned academic allowances, University Transparency Accountability Solution; promotion arrears, renegotiation of 2009 ASUU-FGN Agreement, and the inconsistencies in Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System Payment, none of its demands had been met.
Investigations revealed that as of Sunday afternoon, some members of ASUU NEC had arrived Abuja in readiness for the meeting.
While confirming the meeting to our correspondent, the national chairman, ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, said if the government was responsive, there would be no need for the strike to last for weeks.
“It is just a meeting; they are inviting us for a meeting within the week. They will tell us why they called. I don’t know what they plan to tell us, we will meet them within the week,” he said.
He told Nigerians to “Appeal to the government to implement the agreement we signed with them. The strike can be called off any day, it is in the government’s hand if they want it to last for a week, two weeks, one month, a year, or more. It is the government that will decide when they want the strike to end. Our position is that they should agree and implement what they signed with us. If they are responsive, it doesn’t need to last for weeks. We have given them one month to react.”
Also, the ASUU Chairman, Federal University, Dutsin-ma, Dr Jibrin Shagari, in an interview with The PUNCH, confirmed that the union’s NEC members will converge on Abuja on Monday night.
Shagari said, “Yes, I can confirm that our national officers will be in Abuja on Monday night where they will meet and later meet the Federal Government.”
ASUU rules out confidence in FG as meeting holds
Meanwhile, union members still do not believe that the government is ready to meet their demands.
The Chairman, ASUU, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Dr Gbenga Adeleye, insisted that the union would not call off the strike if their demands were not met.
“There is nothing about whether we are confident or not confident.
“It is for them to meet our demands, if they are not meeting our demands, we are not calling off the strike.”
Similarly, the Chairman of ASUU at the University of Ibadan, Prof. Ayo Akinwole, in a statement on Sunday, said, so far, those in charge of the Ministry of Education had displayed gross incompetence and lack the interests of the masses.
Akinwole described the FG as a slave merchant, who only listened and implemented he destructive policy recommendations of the International Monetary fund and World Bank against the larger interest of Nigerians.
He said, “The Federal Government lacks integrity. It is sad. The government cannot be trusted any longer. We have been on the same salary for 13 years and it is even shameful to show anyone your payslip.
“When compared to the work we do, we have sacrificed for Nigeria to the detriment of our wellbeing and this is already dampening the morale of our people.
“Federal Government should sign the renegotiated agreement, implement it, roll out UTAS, pay unpaid earned academic allowances, commit more funds into the revitalisation of universities.
“Parents should impress it on the government to sign the new welfare package for our members. If we fail to fight for our rights, the slave merchants in government will continue to trade with our future and future of the children of the masses.”
Source: The Punch
Earlier: FG Makes Move to Meet Lecturers’ Demands
The Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Education has begun efforts towards meeting the demands of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). This was disclosed by the ministry in a press statement by its Director of Press and Media Relations, Ben Goong, on Thursday.
The press statement from the education ministry titled, ‘Federal Government constitutes white paper drafting panels for tertiary institutions, explained that ten white paper drafting panels have been constituted.
The statement read in part, “Following the receipt of reports of Visitation Panels to Tertiary Institutions last year, Education Minister, Adamu Adamu has constituted White Paper Drafting Panels for Tertiary Institutions across the country.
“Ten White Paper Drafting Panels have been constituted for 36 Universities, while six Panels have been constituted for 25 Polytechnics with 21 Colleges of Education having 5 Panels.
“One Panel is to draft a White Paper for four Inter-university centres. the Panels will be inaugurated in the coming days.
“All the Panels have two weeks from the date of inauguration to submit their reports.”
The ASUU President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, could not be reached for his comments as of the time of filing this report.
Earlier: ASUU Embarks on One-Month Strike Action
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has declared a “comprehensive and total” strike.
The strike was declared at a press conference addressed by the President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, on Monday.
He said the strike, which takes effect from Monday, February 14, 2022, would last for an initial period of four weeks.
According to him, the union tried to avoid the strike but the Federal Government is unresponsive to the union’s demands.
The ASUU chairman also said ASUU NEC faulted the creation of new universities.
He said, “NEC resolved to embark on the four-week roll-over total and comprehensive strike as the government has failed to implement the Memorandum of Action it signed with the ASUU in December 2020.
“We invite all lovers of education to join our struggle for a greater Nigeria. Nigerian politicians keep proliferating educational institutions without prioritising education.
“ASUU will not relent in its historic responsibility of advocating for an improved university system.
“This is because it holds the key to our collective prosperity and better future for our children and our children’s children; so, let us work together to fix it.”
Osodeke asked the Federal Government to call the Vice-Chancellor of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Prof. Eyitope Ogunbodede, to order over the unpaid Earned Academic Allowances of its members in the university.
“We have an agreed template with FG but the VC refused to pay. Failure to pay using that template is a misappropriation. He should be cautioned,” the ASUU president said.
Members of the union’s National Executive Council had held marathon meetings since Saturday at the University of Lagos titled, ‘NEC for NEC.’
ASUU had sensitised and mobilised lecturers and students across all universities on the reason the union might likely go on strike.
Earlier: ASUU Commences Two-Day Meeting, Takes Final Decision on Sunday
The National Executive Committee of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will on Saturday commence a two-day meeting at the University of Lagos, Akoka, to finalise the union’s decision on an impending strike.
Members of the ASUU NEC will make the final decision on the strike – to be reached by voting – known at the end of the meeting on Sunday, PUNCH reports.
This comes amid allegations that the Federal Government refused to implement some of the agreements it had with the union as far back as 2009.
ASUU had on November 15, 2021, given the Federal Government a three-week ultimatum over the failure to meet the demands.
The intensity of ASUU’s threat of embarking on another strike was heightened during the week following the union’s directive to its branches to observe lecture-free moments to sensitise the public on its demands and why it could commence another round of industrial action.
The union consequently declared Monday, February 9, 2022, as a lecture-free day to mobilise its members ahead of what it described as the longest strike in history.
Several chapters of the union embraced the directive and had held several congresses where they told the public to hold the government responsible if the union decides to embark on strike.
A final decision on the looming strike will be reached this weekend as ASUU NEC meets from February 12 (today) and February 13 at UNILAG.
Meanwhile, Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, has promised to step into the dispute between the Federal Government and ASUU if the Ministry of Education and the National Universities Commission failed to resolve the issue.
He said, “The Ministry of Education is their employer and we have handed over the necessary tools to them. The major issue with ASUU now is the deployment of UTAS which is under the purview of NITDA which is under the Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy. The NUC also has its own role to play.
“My role is to play a reconciliatory officer. If their employers and the NUC fail to reconcile them, then I step in as the reconciliatory officer. It’s not more than that. But I know their employers are finding ways to resolve these issues.”
National President of Parent-Teacher Association of Nigeria, Danjuma Haruna, appealed to President Buhari to quickly intervene to dissuade ASUU from embarking on a fresh nationwide strike.
Haruna made this appeal in a statement on Friday, following recent threats of a fresh strike by many branches of ASUU.
The statement read in part, “Embarking on a new nationwide strike would definitely affect the educational system in the country. So many students would be forced to go home thereby increasing social vices in the country. Solving ASUU’s problems would help to improve the standard of education in all the universities across the 36 states of Nigeria.”
Earlier: ASUU Vows to Commence Industrial Action
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Friday expressed doubts over the ability of the Federal Government under the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to resolve the lingering crisis in the education sector, particularly the universities.
The union said an indefinite strike will commence.
Punch reports that the union described as “shameful” the continued defence of IPPIS by the Federal Government despite reported fraud in it’s implementation as indicated in the 2021 report submitted to the National Assembly by the Auditor General of the Federation.
In a statement on Friday, ASUU lamented the numerous past negotiations and agreements with the Federal Government on how to revamp the education sector but which the government had shown no commitment to implement.
The statement signed by the Chairman of ASUU, University of Jos branch, Dr Lazarus Maigoro, read, “In the last one year, our Union has been engaged with the federal government and its officials over demands which, if met, would lift the standard of our battered tertiary institutions, especially the universities. The undisputed crisis in our educational sector has met, as with other consequences, nothing but the same response. Our union states very clearly that we appreciate the interest demonstrated by the Nigerian Inter-religion Council with a view to resolving the current impasse.
“However, it is not rational to continue to return to the same physician for the cure of an ailment iatrogenically introduced by him or one in which he has failed to cure or bring relief to his patient.
“From historical experience, we can conclude that NIRECs efforts with agents of government will be more prone to bringing further pain and anguish to the system. This will surely be the case if NIREC’s intervention ends with a palliative solution. This will lead to another phase of the same crisis. For the avoidance of doubt, our Union ASUU, has had several meetings with the Minister of Labour, Officials of the Federal Ministry of Education, the NUC, and NITDA and, very recently with the Chief of Staff to the President.
“All these meetings have not calmed our members as the following issues still remain unresolved.
The recent comments by the spokesman to the President, Mr. Femi Adesina that government will keep to the promises, rings very hollow to us. The government’s pattern of response to the issues is that of a serial promise-breaker. Like an unfaithful spouse, they are unable to match their words with action which is affecting the education sector negatively. We are tired of their deceit and IT IS TIME FOR US TO ACT. We want to inform Nigerians, that we are tired of fruitless meetings with the Minister of Labour, NUC Executive Secretary, Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission, NITDA, and the Chief of Staff to the President. If they ever want us to listen to them, they should first of all act on the promises they have already made.
“In the meantime, we are resolved to proceed on an indefinite and comprehensive strike until fidelity returns to our relationship with the government and our demands are met. We are tired of the back and forth.”
Earlier: Lecturers Postpones Decision on Strike, Accuses FG of Blackmail
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has postponed its decision on strike, saying that consultations are still ongoing.
This was contained in a press statement issued by the union after its National Executive Council meeting.
The meeting held at its Festus Iyayi National Secretariat, University of Abuja, on Saturday, December 18, 2021 to review the level of government’s implementation of the FGN-ASUU Memorandum of Action of December 23, 2020 and other related matters.
In the press statement titled, ‘Enough of blackmail’, signed by ASUU president, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, the lecturers regretted that the Federal Government had turned its back on the plan to set up an inter-ministerial committee to review the draft Renegotiated 2009 FGN-ASUU Agreement.
Earlier, ASUU had announced plans to embark on a strike over the Federal Government’s failure to meet its demands.
Apart from the Earned Academic Allowances, ASUU said its demands included the review of the NUC Act to curb the proliferation of universities by state governments who are not funding the existing ones; adoption of the University Transparency Accountability Solutions (UTAS) with concurrent discontinuance of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) and distortion in salary payment.
Others are the release of accumulated promotion arrears; and the review and signing of the draft document on the Renegotiation of 2009 ASUU-FGN Agreement.
Part of the statement read, “NEC was worried by the spirited efforts of government agents to reduce the demands of ASUU to a regime of intermittent payment of watered-down revitalisation fund and release of distorted and grossly devalued Earned
“ASUU shall not relent in demanding improvement in the welfare and conditions of service of our members. However, we shall resist any attempt to blackmail the union and derail our patriotic struggle for a productive university system by official propaganda founded on tokenism and crumb-sharing.
“NEC concluded that government has failed to satisfactorily address all the issues raised in the 2009 FGN-ASUU Agreement and subsequent MoUs and MoAs.
“However, considering the ongoing intervention and consultation efforts, NEC resolved to review the situation at a later date with a view to deciding on the next line of action.”
Earlier: ASUU to Take Final Decision on Proposed Strike Tomorrow
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) is meeting on Saturday to, among other things, take a final decision on its proposed nationwide strike. Read Also: Why ASUU wants to Embark on Strike Action.
Punch Newspaper reported that the union’s zonal coordinator in charge of the Sokoto zone, Jamilu Shehu disclosed in Katsina on Wednesday at a press conference. ASUU Sokoto zone comprises five institutions, including the Umaru Musa Yar’Adua University (UMYU), Katsina, Kebbi State University of Science and Technology, Aliero, Sokoto State University, Sokoto, and Federal University Dutsinma.
The ASUU scribe warned the Federal Government not to drag the nation’s educational sector to dark days of strike actions, by urgently implementing the December 23, 2020, Memorandum of Action reached with the union.
He declared, “We are, hence, calling for all the concerned parties to urgently address these issues in line with the spirit and letters of the December 2020 MoA and the intervention of the Speaker, House of Representatives, and others, or risk industrial action.
“Also the union hereby calls on all patriotic Nigerians to prevail on the government to return to the path of honour by concluding the MoA it agreed to implement. “Both the federal and state governments should be impressed upon to accord the educational sector the attention it deserves because that is the only, and of course surest way, that we can truly develop as a nation.”
Shehu identified outstanding issues to be resolved to also include, lack of full implementation of funding for the revitalization of public universities, and payment and mainstreaming of Earned Academic Allowances. Others, according to him, are the implementation of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution, and inconsistencies in Salary Payment with the Integrated Personnel Payroll System.
He added that ASUU and the Federal Government had concluded the renegotiation exercise, and had come up with a draft document, alleging that the government team was delaying making further recommendations on the draft.
“In view of the foregoing, therefore, ASUU would no longer rely on lies and pledges of the implementation of the 23rd December 2020 MoA by the government,” Shehu maintained.
Ealier: We Were Not Paid N52.12bn, ASUU Slams Minister of Labour
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has denied claims made by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige’s about the union being given N52.12billion as part of their revitalization fund and earned allowances.
The Kano Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Comrade Abdulkadir Muhammad described the claim as deceptive, misleading, and aimed at soiling the image of the Union and its members in the eyes of the public.
He explained that only N22.17 billion was released as Earned Academic Allowance (EAA) out of which only N16.6bn was released to members of the union while the remaining N5.5bn was for other academic unions.
ASUU refutes claims of receiving N52.12bn from the federal government Mohammed further added that out of the N30billion given for revitalization, only N20billion was given to the university managements to address infrastructural decay on campuses, out of which nothing was given to any member of ASUU.
He called on the minister to desist from trivializing its campaign and stop making it look as if the union was all about money.
Ealier: FG Pays ASUU N52.5bn to Avert Strike Action
Consequent to threats made by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to embark on industrial action after the Federal government failed to implement the memorandum of action reached in December 2020, the government has released N52 billion to the union.
According to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, he received confirmation from the Federal Ministry of Finance that the funds had been released to the 38 universities for the revitalization of infrastructure and payment of earned allowances.
He explained that out of the N52.5bn, N30 billion is Revitalisation Fund while N22.5 billion is Earned Academic Allowance.
The minister added that the government is looking forward to settling the remaining areas of the agreement like errors in the computation of salaries of some of the staff and the renegotiation of agreements.
Earlier: ASUU Await Reports from Various Branches to Determine Next Line of Action
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has stated that the union is waiting for reports from its branches before taking a final decision on the Federal Government’s failure to meet their demands.
This was disclosed by the union’s National President, Prof. Emmanuel Oshodeke, in an interview with newsmen.
Reports from our branches over unmet demands will determine the next move – ASUU
ASUU had on November 15 given the Federal Government a three-week ultimatum over government failure to meet its demands.
Oshodeke said the government had not reached out to the union after its three weeks ultimatum elapsed on Sunday.
He said, “We have finished the principal meeting and we have gone back to the branches. Our branches will tell us what to do next. We didn’t say we are giving 24 hours deadline, what we said was that we will reach out to our members within 24 hours.
“We have given them like from 10 days to two weeks to revert to us and we shall discuss other things we want to do. We have not also heard from the FG officially.”
Earlier: ASUU Strike Looms As Union Gives 24 Hours To Declare Action
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has threatened to embark on a strike action if the Federal Government fails to act urgently.
The development trails the expiration of the 21-day ultimatum it handed to the Federal Government to implement its demands.
The National President of ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, said the Federal Government would hear from the union in the next 24 hours concerning its next line of action, Tribune reports.
According to him, consultations were already in place with the various branches for a final position to be made known to the public soon.
Osodeke disclosed that the meeting of the principal officers of the union which was held on Sunday, resolved to proceed on consultation with branches, adding that the consultation would be through within the next one day after which the union would come out with its position.
ASUU also stated that the Federal Government only met one out of the demands of the Union which is the NEEDS assessment; the revitalisation funds of N30billion which it claimed N20billion was paid to the universities.
He said, “It is the principal officers that met yesterday (Sunday)”, explaining that, “following our procedures, we are going to the branches to consult them and then we will come to take the final decision.”
Recall that on 15th November, 2021, ASUU had given the Federal Government three weeks to accede to its demands or face another round of strike.
It was, however, gathered that the Federal Government through the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, is making efforts to stop the imminent strike action.
Recall that ASUU had threatened to embark on another round of strikes following the Federal Government’s failure to implement the Memorandum of Action (MoA) agreed upon.
ASUU President, at a news conference at the union’s National Secretariat, University of Abuja, had called on parents and all patriotic Nigerians to hold the Federal Government responsible if it failed to address the issues within three weeks after the news conference.
He said despite the unions meeting with the Minister of Labour and Employment, on October 14, on major outstanding issues which include, funding for revitalisation of public universities and earned academic allowances.
Other outstanding issues, he said, were University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) promotion arrears, renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, and the inconsistencies in IPPIS payment, which up till now had not been addressed.
“ASUU is fully committed to upholding academic integrity in the universities and is working to make them more globally competitive.
“We are equally committed to promoting industrial harmony in the Nigerian university system for as long as all stakeholders are willing and committed to play their part.
“We call on all vice-chancellors, as the main drivers of the system to join us in this mission to safeguard the waning image of our universities.
“They have no business trading honorary degrees and academic positions for personal and immediate gains; thereby smearing the collective integrity of committed scholars and other patriots who are working day and night to uplift the system that produced them.
“Our union shall not shy away from taking the fight to administrators of Nigerian universities as well as internal and external agents who are bent on compromising the standards ASUU has consistently laboured to protect and improve.
“Government of Nigeria should be held responsible should ASUU be forced to activate the strike it patriotically suspended.
“Finally, we call on all patriotic Nigerians and lovers of Nigeria to prevail on the federal and state governments to act fast to prevent another round of industrial crisis in Nigeria’s public universities,” he had said.
Earlier: ASUU Gives FG One-Week Window to Release N22.27bn Earned Allowances
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has again warned the Federal Government to, without further delay, release the N22.27 billion it said it had approved, to pay the earned academic allowances owed its members.
The union said that is the only way to avert another indefinite strike when its three-week ultimatum expires expired.
The President of the union, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, gave the warning on Sunday in an interview with Nigerian Tribune, saying the three-week ultimatum remains only one week more before the union can take the next action, should government fail to yield to its side.
According to him, up till now, ASUU has not heard anything from the Federal Government concerning the release of the money despite all the promises and it has not also officially communicated to us about the matter.
ASUU at different fora in the last few months and, particularly after the expiration of its August deadline, had been sensitising the public about its lingering contentious issues with the Federal Government threatening to embark on strike should the Federal Government continue to refuse to honour the last agreement it reached with the union last December.
The agreement borders on the provision of funds for the revitalisation of dilapidating infrastructure (hostel accommodation, befitting lecture theatres, state-of-the-art laboratories, good working environment for lecturers, and so forth), payment of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), arresting the trend of proliferation of state-owned universities while neglecting the funding of the existing ones, among others.
Source: Nigerian Tribune
Earlier: Federal Govt to Meet Lecturers This Week to Avoid Planned Strike
The national leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, and delegates from the Federal Government will reportedly meet later this week in a bid to avert another strike.
The date for the meeting will be communicated to the leadership of ASUU during the week by the government team which will include officials of the Education and Labour Ministries, the ministers and leaders of some relevant government agencies.
The Chairman, Lagos Zone of ASUU, Dr Adelaja Odukoya, while speaking with our correspondent yesterday, said the meeting would hold this week, going by assurances from the government side.
“As a union, we are not opposed to negotiation and amicable resolution of issues. In this case, we are awaiting the government team to call us for the meeting. They said it’s going to be this week, we are waiting. They have not given us the date but we are waiting.
“There is no doubt that we have given the government enough time to meet our demands and do the needful. We met with them on August 2, this year and following the meeting, we gave them till the end of August to do certain things.
”The deadline lapsed and up until now, none of the demands has been met. We have given them more than enough time.
“Let us be hopeful that they would do the needful this time around. But people can see that ASUU has been reasonable and considerate enough,” he said.
Earlier: ASUU Strike Looms As Federal Govt Keeps Mum Over The Union’s Agitation
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have asked Nigerians to hold the Federal Government responsible for their next action, This followed the failure of the government to honour an agreement it signed with them and the expiration of the August 31st deadline given by ASUU for the agreement to be met.
According to ASUU, the union will hold an emergency National Executive Council (NEC) this week with its leaders and principal officials to decide its members’ next line of action.
The union said it will follow-up its NEC meeting with consultations with all its chapters should the government fail to implement its promises to its aggrieved lecturers.
So far the Federal Government has not spoken on the latest agitations by the varsity teachers.
ASUU President Emmanuel Osodeke said the NEC would convene to weigh available options and take a position.
Earlier: We’re Not Commencing Strike Tomorrow – ASUU Decries
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has decried that it is not embarking on industrial action from Tuesday, a member of the National Executive Committee, NEC, of the union said.
The NEC member, who is also the Chairman of the University of Lagos, UNILAG, chapter, Dr. Dele Ashiru, in a chat with Vanguard on Monday, explained that there are steps and processes for the union to embark on strike.
He, however, agreed that the union gave the Federal Government up till Tuesday, August 31, to meet some demands.
According to Ashiru, “Yes, we gave the government till the end of this month to meet some demands of ours.
“However, assuming that the demands are not met within the stipulated period, we won’t just begin an industrial action that same day.
“The reason is that ASUU is not a one-man union and is not run like a one-man show. If the demands are not met, the national leadership would call a meeting of NEC and report back to it.
“It is at that NEC meeting that the next step would be decided on. As we talk now, no NEC meeting has been called and so the likelihood of a strike starting on Tuesday is not there.
“Our demands from the government are just three. We want the government to sign and implement the renegotiated agreement we have with them;
“That the government should also mainstream our Academic Earned Allowances and to pay the N40 billon Revitalisation Fund,” he explained.
Recall that the union and the FG had a face-off that led to a nine-month strike by ASUU last year.
The strike was called off last December, but up until now most of the promises made by the government are yet to be fulfilled.
Other issues that union wants the government to address are the implementation of the Integrated Personnel Payroll and Information System, IPPIS, and the proliferation of universities, especially by state governments in the face of poor funding.
Earlier: ASUU to Embark on Nationwide Strike If FG Fails to Honour Agreement By Aug 31st
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has disclosed that the union is gearing up for another strike action due to the failure of the Federal Government to implement an agreement signed with the union. The union has given the FG until Tuesday, August 31st, 2021 to reach out to them or they will have no other option than to activate the procedure of embarking on strike.
According to the President of the union, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, who disclosed this in an interview, the FG no longer picked its calls.
He said, “The government has refused to reach out to us. Government officials have stopped. In fact, they don’t take our calls again. Nigerians should tell the government to do what they agreed to do.
“We signed an agreement and even in May, we reached a final agreement; this is August and nothing has been implemented. Does it make any sense? We are giving them till the end of August and after that, we start the procedures.”
Earlier: ASUU Threatens Fresh Strike Action
The national leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has asked Nigerians to hold the Federal Government responsible if the outstanding issues in the Memorandum of Action (MOA) of December 23, 2020, and issues related to the draft renegotiated agreement of May 2021 are not signed by August ending.
National President of the union, Comrade Victor Emmanuel Osedeke, disclosed this on Monday at a press conference in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, at the end of the National Executive Council meeting held at the University of Ilorin.
He urged Nigerians to put pressure on the Federal Government to sign the agreement in the bid to forestall any imminent strike action by the union.
“ASUU hopes authorities at both the Federal and state government levels would give these matters the urgent attention they deserve to sustain and improve on the current industrial peace on our university campuses,” he stated.
“As at now, a number of issues which border on the welfare and working environment of our members hang precariously on the path of a smooth working relationship between ASUU and governments (Federal and State) in Nigeria.
“Most topical among these are the outstanding issues in the Memorandum of Action (MOA) of 23rd December, 2020 and the issues related to the Draft Renegotiated Agreement of May 2021.”
Comrade Osodeke condemned the plight of state-owned universities saying, “The union is particularly petrified by the declining fortunes and their utter neglect by state governors whose responsibility it is to fund, staff, equip and make the universities nationally and globally competitive.”
He warned that unless urgent and necessary steps are taken, our state-owned universities may soon collapse beyond redemption, hoping that the concerned state governors, governing council, and other individuals and agencies would rise to prevent the calamity.
The ASUU President called on all owners of state universities to, among other things, urgently make adequate budgetary provisions for both capital and recurrent expenditure for infrastructure, staff development, and payment of staff emoluments starting with 2022 budgets.
Osodeke, also asked for the provision of functional pension schemes in line with the 2014 Pension Act, and payment of all salaries and allowances (Including EAA) owed staff with a concrete plan for regular payments subsequently.
He further requested the domestication of the Universities (Miscellaneous Provision) (Amendment) Act of 2012 in all universities where that has not been done.
The union boss further asked the owners of state universities to pay all arrears of third-party deductions such as check-off dues, cooperative contributions and bank loans and pension deductions.
He cautioned against forms of threats and victimisation of ASUU members who legitimately speak out on behalf of the union on the need to address the nagging issues.
On the state of the nation, the union lamented the worsening insecurity situation particularly as it affects the country’s educational institutions.
“Indeed, the mystery surrounding the sudden disappearance of Professor R.B.Adeniyi, of the Department of Mathematics, University of Ilorin, like some others before him on our campuses, had remained unresolved for several months,” he noted.
Comrade Osodeke, charged Nigerian rulers to look inward, tackle corruption headlong, use intelligence to fight insecurity, and gird their loins for home-grown solutions to Nigeria’s problems before other countries and the global community could take us seriously.
Post Credit: DailyPost