The Federal Government has begun moves to prevent an industrial action in the country’s public universities as the Academic Staff Union of Universities’ three-week deadline ended on Sunday.
Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU), had on November 15, 2021 given the Federal Government a three-week ultimatum over failure to meet its demands.
The Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, in an interview with The PUNCH on Sunday, said the ministry had written a letter to the Ministry of Finance on the payment of allowances to staff of universities.
After the union’s National Executive Council meeting at the University of Abuja on November 13 and 14, ASUU President, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, lamented that despite meeting with the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige on October 14, 2021, on issues including funding for revitalization of public universities, earned academic allowances, University Transparency Accountability Solution, promotion arrears, renegotiation of 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, and the inconsistencies in Integrated Payroll and Personnel information system payment, none of the demands had been met.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government promised to pay N30bn as revitalisation fund to universities. It also promised to pay N22.1bn earned allowances to university workers.
The lecturers threatened to embark on another round of industrial action following the ‘government’s unfaithfulness’ in implementation of the Memorandum of Action it signed with the union upon which last year’s strike action was suspended.