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We are ready for a nationwide strike - ASUU

 

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, had reiterated that it would declare a nationwide strike anytime soon following the federal government’s refusal to meet its demands despite consistent appeals.


While addressing journalists on Tuesday during a news conference at the University of Lagos, the coordinator of the Lagos zone of the union, Prof. Adelaja Odukoya, said the union was fast losing patience over government’s insensitivity to the plight of its members and that of the public universities.


Odukoya said the only saving grace that could stop them from embarking on the proposed industrial action is for the federal government to do the needful fast.


He spoke against the backdrop of the union’s National Executive Council, NEC, meeting held at the Obafemi Awołowo University, Ile-Ife, on May 11 and 12, 2024.


“Our union assessed the outcomes of its engagements with the state and federal governments over the last few months on matters pertaining to the status of developments around the renegotiated 2009 Agreement, payment of owed salaries and earned academic allowances (EAA), unremitted deductions made by the disruptive and discredited IPPIS, proliferation of universities, and a number of other matters.


“NEC also had a critical review of government policies and actions that had led to the present deteriorated living and working conditions across the country and in our universities, particularly,” he said.


According to him, most of the issues mentioned had been lingering and unaddressed by the government for many years.


He also debunked the threat of a ‘no work, no pay’ rule by the government, adding that the policy is unknown in global labour laws of which Nigeria is a signatory.


On the newly-constituted governing councils for federal universities, Odukoya described them as ‘illegal.’


He said ASUU had urged the federal government to recall them about a year ago to complete their tenures in line with the University Act upon which they were constituted.


“So, we are not talking about the personalities and composition of the list but the illegality of constituting new councils,” he added.


Odukoya called for proper funding of public universities rather than creating new ones, noting that it is far better to enhance the capacity and access of these universities and make them globally competitive.


He said ASUU would not relent in its struggles for better public university education and the country.

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