ASUU Adamant On Renegotiated Agreement With FG

‘No Going Back,’ ASUU Blames Labour Minister For Prolonged Strike

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has insisted on the signing of the draft agreement reached with the Federal Government for university teachers.

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Its president, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, said the union was yet to receive official communication from the government regarding a new proposal on salary review.

Labour said it would go ahead with its planned pro-ASUU protest tomorrow, but electricity workers would not withdraw their services.

Activist-lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) backed Labour, saying the right to protest was fundamental.

He urged the police to provide security for those protesting.

The Nation had reported that the government was ready to increase the salaries of professors by 100 per cent, with each earning N1million monthly.

This is against the 180 per cent increase said to have been recommended by the Prof Nimi Briggs Committee that renegotiated the 2009 agreements with university unions.

The government has rejected the figures reached in the draft agreement with ASUU.

Osodeke said: “That (the 100 per cent pay rise proposal) is still a social media report; we are not aware.

“We have a negotiated agreement. If they have issues, they should come back to us, not go to the public.

“There is no offer, nothing from the government. When we see what they bring, we will look at it. That is collective bargaining.

“It has not been offered to me. When they bring their offer, we will look at it at the collective bargaining table. What we have as a draft agreement is their offer. It is not ours.”

Also yesterday, ASUU Chairman, University of Ibadan, Prof Ayo Akinwole, said signing and implementing the renegotiated 2009 agreement would end the over five months strike.

“Until we rise above sentiments to get responsible and responsive people who will be accountable to Nigerians into public offices the cycles of strikes will not end in Nigeria,” he said.

Akinwole called on Nigerians to join the struggle to revitalise public universities to give children of the masses hope.

He said unless that was done, the children of the ruling class trained overseas will return to take over from their “wicked parents” and continue to enslave Nigerians.

Akinwole added: “We got here by collective negligence of electing incompetent people into public offices.

“The fight for quality education for the children of the masses has become a class war among the economic elite, the working class and the ruling class.

“Until we rise and demand accountability from those in office to do what is in the best interest of the majority, the cycle of strikes and underdevelopment will not stop.

“Our renegotiation ought to have ended by 2012 but here we are in 2022 and yet the government is playing games with us.

“We are asking for a renegotiation of existing agreements that will position our members as human beings working in a decent place.

“We are asking for the revitalisation of public universities through appropriate funding; and a better homegrown alternative of University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS).

“We are saying check the proliferation of universities that you cannot fund and we are saying Nigerians deserve to be ranked among the top 100 in the world if our leaders invest in education.

“We should be developing our own solutions not depending on others.

“This strike is not about ASUU. It is about the future of the Nigerian children.”

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