Just In: ASUU Suspends Strike

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has officially suspended a strike it commenced in November 2018.

National President of the union, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, announced this on Thursday during a press briefing at the Nigeria Labour Congress complex in Abuja.

The union directed its members; university lecturers to resume duty from tomorrow, February 8.

The striking lecturers took the decision after a meeting with representatives of the Federal Government led by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige.

ASUU and FG representatives in a meeting

The meeting had in attendance leaders of the union and the permanent secretaries at the ministries of Education, as well as Labour and Employment, and some directors from the ministries.

At the meeting, a memorandum of action was signed by the two parties.

Labour Minister, Chris Ngige, said the union agreed with the government that N25 billion naira will be released for the revitalization of public universities.

The Minister listed areas in contention which has been resolved to include the Nigeria University Pension Company, constitution of visitation panels, shortfall in Salaries, Earned Academic Allowance and revitalization funds for universities, adding that while the union has already collected the certificate for NUPENCO, government has made money available for the payment of the shortfall in salaries as well as Earned Academic Allowances.

He said visitation panels have been constituted and will commence work on March 2.

The university lecturers embarked on an indefinite strike on November 4, 2018, following government’s failure to implement the agreement reached with the union in November 2016.

Addressing journalists later, ASUU President, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi announced that the leadership of the union has agreed to suspend the strike action with the condition that it will not hesitate to resume the action if the government failed to meet there part of the agreement.

He, however, lamented the role played by some Vice Chancellors who attempted to break the rank of the union, adding that it will not hesitate to tackle them head-on.

He said: “Based on the initial proposals from Government, the Union made extensive consultations through its various organs.

“The final level of consultation was the meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) which took place 6th-7th February, 2019. NEC resolved that: Following a careful review of the report of engagements with the Federal Government on proposals for addressing all outstanding in the 2013 M011 and 2017 MoA, NEC resolved that the current strike action by the Union should be suspended conditionally with effect from 12.01 am on Friday 8, February, 2019.

“However, should the government fail to fulfil its part of the agreement as reflected in the 2019 Memorandum of Action, ASUU shall resume its suspended strike action as the Union deems necessary.

“ASUU notes, with serious concern, the covert and overt roles of some vice Chancellors in the management and application of funds attracted by our Union to Nigeria’s public universities.

“Consequently, we condemn, in the strongest terms, Vice-Chancellors who have made efforts to undermine and, in some cases, attempted to break our patriotic struggles for the revitalization of public universities in Nigeria.

“ASUU will not shy away from taking headlong those Vice-Chancellors who are reputed for acts of impunity, nepotism and other forms of conduct which are antithetic to university culture and the progressive development of our universities. Our union will compile all their shenanigans and forward them to relevant authorities for further action.”

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