Below is the Latest update on ASUU strike news today Wednesday, 28 September 2022
ASUU Strike Continues As Lecturers Drag FG To Appeal Court
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, says it will appeal the order by the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) asking its members to call off the seven-month-long strike.
The University of Abuja chapter chairman of ASUU, Dr Kasim Umar, stated this while reacting to the order by the court in Abuja.
Umar revealed that the national executive Council of ASUU will meet today to conclude modalities on the appeal process.
Meanwhile, the Pro-Chancellor of the University of Abuja, Prof. Ahmed Modibbo Mohammed, has advised the federal government to apply caution in handling the crisis with the union.
Yunusa AbdulKadir, director of the Department of State Services (DSS) in Yobe state, has asked the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off its ongoing strike.
ASUU has been on strike since February 14 over its call for the federal government to look into university funding, among other issues.
Students have also taken to the streets at different times to protest the lingering strike, including blocking major routes such as the Lagos-Ibadan expressway and the road leading to the airport in Lagos.
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) had also planned to protest on the Abuja-Kaduna highway but the decision was suspended.
Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, the president of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has warned about the far-reaching effects of the judgement of the National Industrial Court, which ordered lecturers back to class.
Osodeke spoke this during an interview on Channels Television on Wednesday night.
According to him, the outcome of the verdict would be catastrophic.
“Let me tell you the catastrophe of what has just happened. The last time this happened was during the military era.
The president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, has warned that the judgement of the National Industrial Court ordering lecturers back to class will have far-reaching effects.
Speaking during an interview on Channels TV on Wednesday, the don said the outcome of the verdict would be catastrophic.
He said, “Let me tell you the catastrophe of what has just happened. The last time this happened was during the military era. I can assure you, when this strike is over, a large number of our lecturers are going to migrate from this country. When you are using force to push your lecturers to class.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has made moved to appeal the order by the National Industrial Court, directing lecturers to resume work immediately.
The union said it had started assembling its lawyers led by a renowned human rights activist, Femi Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, to file an appeal.
The Chairman of the union, Lagos zone, Adelaja Odukoya, in a statement urged members of the union to remain calm and united to fight till the end.
The National Association of Nigerian Students has rejected the court judgement mandating the Academic Staff Union of Universities to call off its 7 month strike.
The National Industrial Court of Nigeria on Wednesday ordered the ASUU to call off its ongoing nationwide strike.
But reacting to the ruling in a statement, NANS National Public Relations Officer, Giwa Temitope, said the judgement betrays equity.
The student union spokesperson explained that rather than direct ASUU to return to classroom, the court should have ordered the Federal Government to sort the striking lecturers.
The National Industrial Court of Nigeria has ordered the Academic Staff Union of Universities to suspend its ongoing nationwide strike on Wednesday September 21st, 2022.
Recall that ASUU has been on strike since February 14th to press home the demands for improved funding for universities, a review of salaries for lecturers, among other issues.
Several meetings between ASUU and the Federal Government had ended in a deadlock.
Consequently, the Federal Government went to court to challenge the strike.
NANS has released a protest timetable over ASUU Strike and marked Abuja for a total shutdown.
IDOMA VOICE reports that the National Association of Nigerian Students has rolled out a new timetable for its nationwide protests.
This was made known in a circular signed by the union president, Usman Umar Barambu and dated Monday, September 19, 2022.
The Abuja division of the National Industrial Court will today hear a suit brought before it by the Federal Government of Nigeria against the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the lingering strike action.
Justice Hamman, on the last adjourned date, had fixed today for hearing of the interlocutory injunction filed by the FG. He directed parties in the suit to file and exchange their written submissions before today.
The FG had taken ASUU to court seeking an order to restrain the union from continuing with its ongoing strike “pending the hearing and determination of substantive suit.”
Court declines to hear FG’s motion for order to call off ASUU strike
The National Industrial Court, NIC, sitting in Abuja, on Friday, declined to hear an application the federal government filed for an order to direct the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, to immediately suspend their ongoing strike action.
The court, in a ruling by Justice Polycarp Hamman, refused to hear the application, after it heard from counsel to the striking varsity lecturers, Mr. Femi Falana, SAN.
FG’s lawyer, Mr. James Igwe had at the resumed proceedings in the matter on Friday, attempted to persuade the court to hear the claimants’ interlocutory application for an injunction against ASUU.
He told the court that the matter was not only urgent, but of a great national interest as millions of students have been at home since February 14.
“Section 47 of the Trade Dispute Act gives your lordship the power to direct that no worker should continue to embark on strike pending when the applications are heard and determined”, he argued.
He urged the court to order the ASUU to in the interim, return to the classroom, pending the determination of the suit.
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has vowed to continue to occupy major highways in protest against the ongoing nationwide strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
They spoke one after the other at Sagamu interchange on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway during their protest against the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Recall that the students on Tuesday morning blocked the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, protesting against the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Motorists were on Tuesday held to a standstill for hours as students, under the aegis of the National Association of Nigerian Students, on Tuesday, took the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Shagamu Interchange, in protest.
The protest is in reaction to the prolonged strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
In a statement issued to the press on the protest ground, signed by the Coordinator, South-West Zone, and National Public Relations Officer of NANS, Adegboye Emmanuel and Giwa Temitope, respectively, the students said the Federal Government, led by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), was failing in its promises to revamp education.
“There is no point arguing about who is at fault or what is to be done, it is very clear that the rulers underfund education and the Buhari government is failing in its promises to revamp education.
ASUU Strike: Commuters stranded as students block Lagos-Ibadan expressway
Some Nigerian students on Tuesday blocked Lagos-Ibadan Expressway over the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
The students blocked the road at the Sagamu Interchange section of the road.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, on Tuesday said the government could only afford a 23.5 percent salary increase for lecturers, while a 35% increment will be enjoyed by professors.
The minister also noted that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) warned against signing agreements which the government will not be able to meet.
Adamu disclosed this while speaking during the meeting with vice-chancellors and other stakeholders in the university system.
He said, “The Federal Government can only afford a 23.5% salary increase for all categories of the workforce in Federal Universities, except for the professorial cadre which will enjoy a 35% upward review.
The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, Tuesday, disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari warned the government team involved in the negotiation with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, against signing an agreement that government would be unable to implement.
The minister, in his speech at the ongoing meeting of Pro-Chancellors and Vice-Chancellors of Federal Universities, at the National Universities Commission, said the meeting convened at the instance of NUC, became “necessary and urgent due to certain misconceptions and misinformation in the public domain, regarding the ongoing strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.”
The Academic Staff Union of Universities has faulted the claims by the Federal Government that it had met the demands of the union.
The ASUU Chairman, University of Ibadan, Prof. Akinwole Ayoola, said on Monday that the Federal Government’s claims were lies.
The union stated that all its chapters that started the over six-month-old strike were still part of the ongoing action and were resolute to get what public universities needed from the government to survive and compete globally.
He said, “Nigerians should disregard the lies of the Federal Government. The Federal Government is far from meeting any of the union’s seven demands.
At least 11 state universities are not part of the strike declared by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
Despite the ongoing strike embarked on by varsity lecturers, Academic activities are going on in universities owned by Osun, Rivers, Delta, Borno, Anambra, Kwara and Akwa Ibom states as well as the three universities owned by Lagos State.
Also ahead of the National Universities Commission meeting with vice-chancellors and pro-chancellors of federal universities today (Tuesday), the Federal Government on Monday vowed to end the culture of strikes in tertiary institutions in the country.
But as the strike by ASUU entered its 204th day, lecturers in some state universities are not on strike.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has declared that it won’t back down from its strike, stating that it remains resolute with its demands and will see the struggle through.
This was disclosed by Prof. Ayo Akinwole, the Chairman of ASUU, University of Ibadan chapter, in a statement on Monday in Ibadan, Oyo State, according to NAN.
He added that some sectors in Nigeria have been on strike for 13 months and the government has been paying their salaries.
President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof Emmanuel Osodeke has disclosed that since the ongoing strike which started in February, the government has held the salaries of lecturers.
He disclosed this while speaking on Channels TV this morning August 2. He accused the Federal Government of using hunger as a tool to force the striking lecturers into returning to their classrooms.
According to him, the Federal Government thinks that depriving the lecturers of their salaries will force the university teachers to collapse and end the strike.
The National Universities Commission (NUC) has announced it will meet with Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, Pro-Chancellors and Vice-Chancellors of federal universities on the 6th of September over the strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
This was disclosed by the NUC Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, in a statement signed by the Commission’s Deputy Executive Secretary, Administration, Mr Chris Maiyaki, and made available to newsmen in Abuja.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria, the NUC said the purpose of the meeting with the minister and others is to seek a succeeding solution to the crisis.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has advised the federal government to emulate former President Goodluck Jonathan in resolving the ongoing ASUU strike.
Recall that lecturers embarked on the industrial action on February 14, 2022, over the government’s inability to fully address the union’s demands.
ASUU president, Emmanuel Osodeke, in an interview with AIT’s Focus Nigeria, claimed Jonathan’s administration engaged the union in a 14-hour negotiation to resolve the issue.
“Government should for once go the way of Goodluck Jonathan. And in one night, we had that meeting for 14 hours.
The National Executive Council of the Academic Staff Union of Universities will commence its meeting by 4pm Today.
The NEC is the highest decision-making body of ASUU.
The outcome of the NEC meeting will determine whether ASUU will call off its strike which began on Monday, February 14, 2022.
“The meeting will start by 4pm,” a member of the NEC confirmed this to our correspondent on Sunday.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has cleared the air on a viral report that it named universities owned by state governments quack.
ASUU President, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke was quoted as saying that state universities are quack and should not be taken seriously.
The development has triggered backlash from some State universities and concerned Nigerians who lambasted the ASUU president for allegedly naming State universities ‘quack’.
After several months of suspension of academic activities in Nigerian public universities by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the management of Ekiti University (EKSU) has called off strike.
In a statement, the school’s Registrar, Mr Ife Oluwole, Thursday, ordered the resumption of academic and administrative activities at the institution.
The statement further directed all newly-admitted students for the 2021/2022 academic session to resume on Monday, August 29, 2022, for screening, registration and orientation programme.
There are reports that the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) is set to likely declare an indefinite strike during its upcoming National Executive Council (NEC) meeting over the inability of the Federal Government to meet its demands.
Unconfirmed reports alleges that none of the ASUU branches that have held their congresses voted for the suspension of the industrial action, noting that it is either they voted for another rollover of an indefinite strike.
According to the Nation, most of the over 123 branches of the union have completed their congresses while others are expected to round off their today (Wednesday).
The Peoples Democratic Party’s presidential candidate in the 2023 elections, Atiku Abubakar, has said he will hand over Federal Government-owned universities to state governments.
The Adamawa-born politician stated this on Monday as a panelist at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Nigerian Bar Association’s Annual General Conference held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos.
The conference, with the theme ‘Bold Transitions’, began on Monday and will run until August 26.
Speaking on Monday during the panel session aired live on Channels Television, Atiku said the Federal Government does not have infinite resources.
“The only way is to make sure that you make conducive environment available to both foreign and local investors to participate in our country, whether it is infrastructure, whether it is education, whether it is power,” he said.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has once again rejected the plea to return to call off its ongoing strike.
The union, which met with Federal Government officials on Tuesday, maintained its stance on the industrial action.
Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, was part of the meeting that ended without a truce.
Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, Chairman of the Union, accused the Federal Government of withholding the salaries of lecturers so as to force them to return to classrooms.
More to come.
Main talks are currently on Revitalisation. All other talks have been positive so far in the meeting.
Meeting took off about an hour ago – Key Notes
– The Meeting later started about 8:14pm Today
– FG & ASUU agree on UTAS Payment
– Prof Gambari is handling the Negotiation between ASUU & FG
– Talks today is mostly centred on Revitalisation Fund & Increment of Salaries points.
Nigerian students have reacted to the delay by the Academic Staff of Universities, ASUU, and the federal government to reach a truce in its ongoing dialogue.
The union had said it is ready to call off its lingering strike if the federal government signs the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) as the payment platform of lecturers.
There is currently anxiety and suspense among Nigerians students as they await the final outcome of the ongoing meeting between members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, and the federal government delegation over the ongoing ASUU strike.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) said it is ready to call off its lingering strike if the federal government signs the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) as the payment platform of lecturers.
Emmanuel Osodeke, ASUU president, spoke on Monday during an interview with Channels Television.
Speaking on Monday, the ASUU president said the federal government invited the union for a meeting on Tuesday on the issue of renegotiation.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government representatives on Tuesday have resumed negotiation on how to end the ongoin prolonged ASUU strike.
President of ASUU, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, who made known on Monday while speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, said the meeting was to discuss one of seven issues ASUU is protesting over.
“That’s the issue of renegotiation,” Osodeke said.
Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has called on parents and students to vote out the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) come 2023 general election.
IDOMA VOICE reports that ASUU said the ruling APC government of President Muhammadu Buhari does not value the future and education of the Nigerian youths.
ASUU National President, Professor Emmanuel Osedeke, stated that the government of APC has shown that it was not ready to address the demands of the body which is improving the university system.
Strike: ASUU President, Osodeke to address OAU members
The President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Emmanuel Osodeke, is billed to attend the congress of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU) chapter of the union on Thursday.
A statement by the Secretary of the chapter of the union, Kayode Atilade, noted that Mr Osodeke will address the congress “on the status of its struggles.”
Though Mr Atilade did not disclose the specific issues to be addressed by the President, the visit may not be unconnected to the raging conflicts between the union and the university management especially over the sharing of the earned academic allowance recently released by the government.
The university’s chapter of ASUU is also at loggerheads with a breakaway faction under the umbrella of the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA), and Mr Osodeke was fingered as one of the major protagonists in the crisis.
ASUU Not Only One In Nigeria, We Can’t Close Other Sectors Because They Are Owed- Keyamo
The Federal Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo has stated that the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, should not expect the Federal government to meet its requirement because the government cannot close other sectors.
Recall that the university lecturers union on Monday extended their industrial action which started on February 14 by four weeks after a failed negotiation between the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu and the body.
President Buhari had given the minister a two weeks ultimatum to address the demands of ASUU for students who have been at home for five months to return to school.
ASUU Strike: I’ve Never Seen Weak President Like Buhari- Tanko Yakasai
The former Media Aide to Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, Tanko Yakasai, said the president has lost control of his appointees.
Salihu Tanko Yakasai, who was fired by Abdullahi Ganduje for criticizing President Buhari on insecurity said it was worrisome that after the two weeks ultimatum given to the Minister of Education Mallam Adamu Adamu had expired, the ASUU strike continues without an end in sight.
Describing President Buhari as weak, Tanko Yakasai said the action of the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, without consequence, was shameful and embarrassing.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has again extended the ongoing strike by four weeks.
President of the union, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke who disclosed this via a statement on Monday, said the decision was to give the government enough time to resolve all outstanding issues with the lecturers.
Noting that the body conveyed an emergency National Executive Committee meeting of the association at the University of Abuja on Sunday, the ASUU President said the extension is with immediate effect on August 1.
The Federal Government and workers’ unions in various sectors of the economy were literally at each other’s jugular, yesterday, over the five-month long strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, which has grounded the nation’s ivory towers.
Pointedly, the Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals, ANAP, and National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees, NUBIFIE, have threatened to shut down airports, banks and financial institutions in solidarity with the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, which has directed its members to embark on a nationwide protest on July 26 and 27 in solidarity with the university teachers’ industrial action.
However, Presidency officials yesterday accused ASUU leaders of sustaining the on-going strike by blackmail, threat and feeding members with lies about the Federal Government’s efforts at resolving the industrial action that has entered the sixth month.
“This is different from the N304 billion from the Tertiary Education Trust Fund TETFUND for 2021 and first quarter of 2022,” the Presidency officials added
ASUU strike: ‘Calm down, you’re not yet president’ – Mixed reactions as Tinubu meets NANS leadership
The president of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Comrade Sunday Asefon on Thursday disclosed that the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has reached a stage where the end is more important than the means. He added that NANS under his leadership will do anything possible to make sure that students return to school as soon as possible.
The NANS president disclosed this after leading the national executives of NANS and stakeholders to meet with the presidential aspirant of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, in order to find a lasting solution to the strike, which clocked five months today.
The meeting also had in attendance Tinubu’s running mate, Kashim Shettima.
Taking to Facebook hours after meeting with Tinubu, Asefon wrote: “We had fruitful engagements and Asiwaju, who passionately expressed his concerns and his efforts in the past during similar strike action commended the students leaders for their initiatives to engage in high level advocacy and seek political solution. He shared our position that every reasonable Nigerian must be seriously concerned as the continuous strike poses a great danger to security and collective well being of our nation.
“Asiwaju therefore promised to immediately step up his interventions, even now that the President has opened the window for individual contributions to dialogues in pursuit of the end of the industrial action.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), has vowed to join the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, in their ongoing strike.
The workforce said this will compel the Federal Government to find immediate resolutions to contending issues with education sector unions.
The NLC President, Mr Ayuba Wabba, who stated this during the opening of the Congress’ Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting on Thursday in Abuja, said the move was to call the attention of the Federal Government to resolve the lingering issues immediately.
Wabba said: “You will recall that the last decision we took, we even went to the extent of writing to President Muhammadu Buhari, we gave a 21-day notice for them to converge a very high-powered meeting.
“We demanded that the meeting should be chaired either by the Secretary of Government of the Federation (SGF), or the Chief of Staff to the President, for this issue to be resolved once and for all.READ MORE
ASUU will call off strike next week, says Education Minister.
IDOMA VOICE reports that the Minister of Educati on, 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.
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.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has revealed that the renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-Federal Government agreement which has been a major bone of contention in its dispute with the government is progressing smoothly and has reached an advanced stage.The lecturers union said that the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), which the government has refused to accept, has been tested for the third time by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) and would start testing the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) by next week.
This disclosure is part of the statement issued by the ASUU President, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, and can be seen on the union’s website.
The statement partly reads, ‘’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. UTAS (University Transparency and Accountability Solution) has been tested for the third time. So far, NITDA (National Information Technology Development Agency) has tested UTAS and UPS and will start testing IPPIS next week.
‘’We are undeterred by the antics of some government officials in this respect.
“We are on the threshold of victory. Let us keep faith with the union. A people united can never be defeated.”
ASUU Strike Update: FG Team Fails To Meet Deadline To Resolve Issue
Prof. Nimi Briggs-led committee set up the Federal Government to renegotiate the 2009 Agreement signed by the government with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, and put an end to the ongoing industrial action by the union has failed to meet the three-month time frame given it by the FG to conclude its assignment.
The committee, which was inaugurated by the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, on March 7 this year, was given three months to conclude its assignment.
It was gathered that Adamu gave the committee the go-ahead to continue its negotiation with the union since there seemed to be some progress even though nothing concrete was agreed to within the time limit
Therefore, the committee is expected to continue the negotiation with the union later this week after the public holiday.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) is currently undergoing another round of tests by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).
ASUU President, Emmanuel Osodeke, said UTAS passed over 90 per cent in the first and second tests carried out on it, but that NITDA concluded that the payment platform failed some tests.
“On UTAS, we are going for a third test. Like I told you, the second one, we scored 99 per cent. The test is ongoing,” he said.
Mr Osodeke, who spoke on Human Rights Radio in Abuja on Saturday, also touched on several issues surrounding the ongoing strike and why the strike has lingered.
“A vice chancellor cannot employ a professor without getting permission from the head of civil service, which is against all the rules in the world. Who is a head of civil service compared to a vice-chancellor,” he said.
“You employ a professor and federal character commission will run after you saying you did not follow federal character principle. In which country do you use federal character to employ a professor. You employ a professor by merit.”
ASUU strike: Union says discussions with FG’s Briggs committee has been “progressive”
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), announced that present negotiations with the recently constituted committee chaired by Prof. Nimi Briggs has been progressive.
The Union disclosed this in a statement on Friday after its visitation panels submitted reports.
It revealed that negotiations with the committee commenced last week over its demands.
In its statement, ASUU said it met today as its visitation panels submitted reports.
It tweeted, “The Academic Staff Union of Universities on Thursday expressed optimism about its ongoing meeting with the Prof. Nimi Briggs committee, describing the negotiation as being progressive.”
Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, National President of the Union added said the union had been negotiating with the Briggs committee since last week over its demands.
Ahmed Isah set to raise N18 billion to end ASUU strike
An anchor and owner of the popular Human Rights Radio in Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ahmed Isah, has announced that he is crowdfunding for the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to return to class.
ASUU and other university workers’ unions have been on strike for almost four months. The unions’ demands, among other things, include better funding for the nation’s public tertiary institutions and improved welfare for their members.
While the government released 34 billion naira for the payment of minimum wage consequential adjustments from 2019, ASUU has maintained that until its core demands are met, it will not suspend the strike.
In a live broadcast on Thursday, Mr Isah, who is the anchor of the Brekete Family programme on the radio station, said he is willing to volunteer to mediate between ASUU and the government.
He also promised to donate N10 million naira to the cause and called on Nigerians to donate into a designated bank account posted on the Brekete Family social media pages and his personal twitter handle.
Mr Isah also announced the donation of N1 million naira by Segun Ogunyanwo, a deputy registrar at the Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators (ICMC).
“Let us challenge ourselves as Nigerians. This is an opportunity for us to test ourselves to know how united we are. Come 2023, this ASUU intervention will give me a sign that, as masses, we are ready to turn things around,” he said on Thursday.
“Your one naira, N1,000 naira, N5000, N10,000 is not too small. No matter how poor you think you are, make sure you contribute something, even if it is one naira.”
ASUU President, Emmanuel Osodeke, and Ben Goong, the director of press at the federal ministry of education, couldn’t be reached for comments. Also, text messages sent to them had not been responded to as of the time of filing this report.
Universities and the federal government have been urged to rally around and close ranks so that Nigerian students will leave the streets and go back to classes.
The Senator representing Abia North at the National Assembly, Orji Uzor Kalu, made this plea on Tuesday in a statement on his Facebook page.
He expressed his sympathy for Nigerian students “who against their will are out of school due to the ongoing ASUU strike”.
He said, “I call on the universities and federal government to rally round and close ranks so that our students will leave the streets and go back to classes.
“I sympathise with the students who against their will are out of school due to the ongoing ASUU strike”.
The Senate Chief Whip remembered the past, stating, “while I was the Governor of Abia state (199-2007), primary to university education (in the state) was made free and affordable.
“My government invested a lot in education to encourage people to go to school.
“The states and federal government are supposed to pay strict attention to education. It is irresponsible for any government to deny attention to education sector.”
He added, “Incessant strikes lead to delays in students’ graduation and slows down their life plans and life pursuits”.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, Joint Action Committee of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions have said the Prof Nimi Briggs Committee is in negotiation with the unions.
Speaking in an interview with The PUNCH on Sunday, the ASUU’s National President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, said the union had been negotiating with the Briggs Committee since last week over its demands.
ASUU commenced its ongoing strike on February 14, 2022 after the Federal Government failed to meet some of its demands namely; 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 University Transparency and Accountability Solution payment platform.
IDOMA VOICE recalls that on March 7, 2022, the Federal Government inaugurated a seven-man committee chaired by the Pro-Chancellor of Alex Ekweme Federal University, Ndufu-Alike, Prof Nimi Briggs.
The committee, which is expected to review the proposed FGN/ASUU Agreement, has its terms of reference, some of which include; to liaise and consult with relevant stakeholders to finalise the position of the FG to the issues in the draft proposed FGN/ASUU renegotiated agreement; renegotiate in realistic and workable terms the 2009 agreements with other university-based unions; and negotiate and recommend any other issue the committee deems relevant to reposition the National Universities Commission for global competitiveness.
Osodeke said, “We are discussing with the Federal Government through the renegotiation team and we started last week.
“The negotiation is between ASUU and the Briggs Committee and agreement should be negotiated quietly. When we reach an agreement, we will come to the press. We hope this approach/ negotiation will solve the problem so that by next week, we will brief Nigerians. Give us a little time.”
When asked if ASUU would call off the strike soon, Osodeke said, “We don’t know until we finish the negotiation.”
The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnic(ASUP) has directed its members to resume work on Monday May 30, 2022 following the expiration of its two- week strike.
The union said it took the decision following some progress made with the Federal Government regarding its demands.
ASUP, in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Abdullahi Yalwa disclosed that the government had met four of its demands.
It said the decision to resume work was to give the federal government more time to meet the remaining five demands.
The statement reads: “The two weeks definite strike of the union will be rounding off on the 29th of May, 2022 as agreed by the emergency meeting of NEC.
“Consequently, the union is requesting
members to resume duties effective 30th of May, 2022 while hoping that government will take advantage of the window to address the five outstanding items.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities has said that despite the non-payment of salaries to its members, the union remains undaunted in its struggle for a better university system.
Speaking to our correspondent on Friday, the Chairman of the union’s branch at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Dr. Adeola Egbedokun, confirmed to The PUNCH that the Federal Government stopped paying the salaries of striking lecturers since March 2022.
Dr. Egbedokun said, “The last time they paid us was February. Since March, they stopped paying the salaries.”
Another lecturer at the institution also confirmed the non-payment of the salaries.
Speaking further, Dr. Egbedokun said, “We’re used to it. The non-payment of salaries cannot break us.”
When asked about the next move of the union over the ongoing strike and the minimum wage arrears reportedly paid to the lecturers, the Chairman said that the wage arrears were statutory by the law and had nothing to do with their current agitations, saying, “If you observe, ASUU has not said anything about it, we decided not to, it is not the crux of our agitation.”
“What we’re expecting the government to do now is to come forward with a proposal, in response to the submitted renegotiated document, which has been with the government since May 2021. This time, we’re not signing or interested in any Memorandum or Agreement again. Let them come forward with a proposal in response to the renegotiated document, and let’s see how we can consider it.”
Strike: ASUU Reveals Next Line Of Action, Sympathizes With Students
ASUU in its demands has called for the renegotiation of the ASUU/FG 2009 agreement and the sustainability of the university autonomy by deploying UTAS to replace the government’s “imposed” (IPPIS).
Also in its demands is the release of the reports of visitation panels to federal universities, distortions in salary payment challenges, funding for revitalisation of public universities, earned academic allowance, poor funding of state universities and promotion arrears.
Osodeke on Thursday said there won’t be a need to call off the strike despite the federal releasing N34 billion for the payment of consequential adjustment for a minimum wage of workers in the education system.
He further stated that the N34 billion released was not part of their demands.
Osodeke also sympathised with university students over the prolonged strike by the union.
According to Osodeke, the students are suffering for Nigeria’s future and education system.
The ASUU president said the students were not being punished but paying the price to ensure that Nigeria had a good education
ASUU: FG Agrees To Pay N34bn Minimum Wage Arrears
The Federal Government says it will spend about N34 billion as arrears of Minimum Wage Consequential Adjustments in the education sector effective from 2019.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige said that this was aimed at resolving the lingering crisis in the sector, NAN reports.
Ngige made this known while speaking with newsmen on the prolonged strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), and others on Tuesday in Abuja.
Ngige said that the beneficiaries of the Minimum Wage Consequential Adjustments included the members of the striking ASUU and their counterparts in the polytechnics and Colleges of Education.
According to Ngige, the universities will get N23.5 billion, the polytechnics N6 billion and the Colleges of Education N4 billion, bringing the total sum to N33.5 billion.
The minister, while giving an update on the ongoing strike, said committees were set up during the last tripartite meeting of the government and university based unions.
He said they were given a fortnight to turn in their report, adding they were still working and the reports of the committees were being expected at the end of the week.
“Those committees are working. The one on NITDA is testing the three platforms, the government’s Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
“Also the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) of ASUU and the Universities Peculiar Personnel Payroll System (UPPPS) of the non-teaching staff.
NANS South West Zone Coordinator, Mr Adegboye Olatunji, made this known in Abuja on Monday, at a protest to the All Progressive Congress (APC) Secretariat in solidarity with Gov. Dapo Abiodun of Ogun to run for a second term.
Olatunji said that it was time both parties came together to resolve the issues leading to the strike as students were at the receiving end.
“We are planning to block government organisations that generate money for them if the ASUU issue is not resolved.
“We have been protesting on this issue by occupying major roads in the South West but we believe if we ground airports, the government will do something about the strike,” he said.
Olantunji said that the student body had dissociated itself from Abiodun’s prosecution and disqualification from contesting the 2023 elections.
He said Abiodun’s education policy remained enviable in the South West region because he’s coming on board had helped in the resuscitation of some tertiary institutions in the state.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities has insisted that its members won’t resume work despite the Federal Government’s payment of minimum wage arrears.
This [was contained in a circular by the University of Lagos branch of the union titled, ‘Payment of minimum wage arrears’.
The chairman of UNILAG ASUU, Dele Ashiru, confirmed the authenticity of the circular on Saturday.
Ashiru described the arrears payment as “long-overdue”, saying that the core demands of ASUU have not been met.
The circular read, “The leadership of our Branch has been inundated with calls concerning the recent payment of the long-overdue arrears of the consequential adjustment of the minimum wage.
“Our members are reminded that this is not one of the core demands upon which the ongoing strike action is premised.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the demands of our Union are the conclusion of the renegotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, abrogation of the fraudulent and corrupt IPPIS scheme and the deployment of UTAS, payment of promotion arrears, the proliferation of State Universities and governance issues amongst others.