Indefinite strike: ASUU blows hot, says no more negotiation with FG

Some members of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has urged the leadership of the union to stop negotiating with Buhari’s government.

Recall, the striking lecturers on Monday, August 29, 2022, declared an indefinite strike action after six months of industrial action across public universities.

The strike is in protest against the government’s failure to release revitalisation funds for universities, failure to release the white paper report of the visitation panel to universities and the failure to deploy the University Transparency Accountability System for the payment of salaries and allowances of lecturers.

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Last week, the Minister of Education Adamu Adamu said the Federal Government had addressed most of the union’s demands including the release of N50b for the payment of earned allowances for academic and non-academic and non-academic staff of universities but said the that the union will not be paid the arrears of the strike period.

The union has also insisted on not calling off the lingering strike until the arrears are settled.

According to credible sources, privy to the development said, the majority of the ASUU Chapters across universities keyed into the decision to go on indefinite strike. 

A member of the union National Executive Committee who spoke to Dailytrust under anonymity because he was not authorised to speak, said with the declaration of indefinite strike, “There would be no more negotiations with the federal government.”

He also said there was a shouting match among ASUU members at the beginning of the meeting over some issues, including a comment credited to the ASUU President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke when he appeared on Arise Television where he reportedly called state universities “quacks”. 

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The official explained, ‘’Some people faulted him for saying that, while others backed him. The two camps shouted at each other but we later resolved everything. Let me tell you, no more negotiations until when our demands are met.” 

Another source close to the ASUU leadership at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria said that even though there was no resolution yet at the top level, some members of the union were of the opinion to stop negotiation with the federal government until when President Muhammadu Buhari leaves office in May 2023.

“I can assure you that this view is gathering momentum in many universities,” the lecturer said. 

“Many lecturers believe that there is no need to keep dissipating energy talking to government officials because they are not ready to listen. 

“I know that many lecturers here in ABU and others at BUK, Federal University, Dutse and in the South are of the opinion that ASUU should also foreclose talking to the government until after this government leaves. 

“It is not that we don’t have empathy. We are all affected. I am also affected because I have children in the public university and they have been at home for over six months. I have also not been receiving my salary but the fact is that the government should do the right thing to save the universities from collapsing,” he said. 

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