There seems to be no end in sight to the university professors’ strike as the national president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, has said that they have no yet to hear from the government, having met Professor Nimi Briggs’ renegotiation committee. .
The committee should review the proposed FGN/ASUU 2009 draft agreement and renegotiate with all striking unions.
Since April 2022, the Briggs Renegotiation Committee had been meeting with the unions to address the sticky points of the 2009 agreement.
Osodeke, in an interview, said they have yet to hear from the federal government on the report of the meetings held so far.
He said: “Since our meeting with the Briggs Committee, the government has not called us for comment. All the committee has told us is that they are waiting for their director’s response, that once the federal government has responded, they will respond to us.
Osodeke said they did not receive the invitation for another meeting and nothing is happening at this time.
He however lamented that this had been the situation since May 2021, “in the same way they told us they were waiting for the FG and yet no results”.
Similarly, the national chairman of the Association of Senior Staff of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Ibrahim Mohammed, said all they did was assessments and examinations, while the Briggs committee said it would report back to the federal government for the next line of action.
While the ASUU began the strike on February 14, the SSANU strike began with a two-week warning strike, which began on March 27.
Some of SSANU’s demands include the inconsistent issue of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), unpaid allowances and the delay in renegotiating the agreements of FGN, SSANU, Union of Non-Academic Staff of Educational and Related Institutions (NASU), and non-payment of minimum wage arrears.
Others include the neglect and underfunding of state universities, the non-payment of retirement benefits to outgoing union members, and the usurpation of leadership of non-teaching units in flagrant violation of terms of service and establishment procedures, among others.
ASUU’s demands include releasing revitalization funds for universities, renegotiating the 2009 FGN/ASUU agreement, releasing earned allowances for university professors, and rolling out the Transparency and Accountability System of Universities (UTAS) for the payment of salaries and allowances of university professors.