The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has lost its suit challenging the registration of the Congress Of University Academics (CONUA) and the Nigeria Association of Medical and Dental Academics (NAMDA) as trade unions by the Federal Government.
Recall that ASUU in October 2022, dragged the government before the National Industrial Court (NIC), for recognising CONUA and NAMDa as academic unions.
However, the NIC in judgement today, Tuesday, July 25, 2023, dismissed the suit filed by ASUU and validated the CONUA and NAMDa as trade unions.
Justice Kanyip while delivering judgment on Tuesday held that Section 27 of the Trade Union Act allows for more than one trade union in employment and that that the section does not depict trade monopoly.
Kanyip also held that the then minister of labour, Chris Ngige, and the registrar of Trade Unions had the right to register both the NAMDA and CONUA to co-exist with ASUU.
According to Kanyip, ASUU did not present any evidence before the court to show the complete registration of CONUA and NAMDA when it filed the suit.
The court also stood on the ground that the evidence presented by ASUU was hearsay.
It said it believes so because the suit was filed on October 26, 2022 while CONUA and NAMDA registration had not yet been gazetted in line with Section 523 of the Trade Union Act.
According to the court’s ruling, ASUU also made a mistake by filing against NAMDA as the National Association of Medical and Dental Academics instead of the Nigeria Association of Medical and Dental Academics.
It said that it was a mere mis-normal to a description in a suit that appears only when a person has a Jurisdictional name or is in existence.
Justice Kanyip further held that NAMDA had not been in existence at the time ASUU filed the law suit.
All reliefs sought by ASUU were refused and the suit accordingly dismissed.