The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has stated that the Federal Government have only been able to meet two of his eight demands in the last nine month.
This was disclosed by the Ibadan Zone of the union in a statement released after its meeting at the Ladoke Akintola University (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso chaired by its Coordinator in LAUTECH, Prof. Oyebamiji Oyegoke, on Thursday.
Oyegoke said in the statement that the strike was “a ticking bomb” and feared that the educational system would be engulfed in another crisis.
“For the avoidance of doubt, ASUU stated that only salary shortfall and setting up of Visitation Panels to the Federal Government-owned universities have been addressed by the government in nine months.
“Other demands such as the renegotiation of conditions of service, injection of revitalization funds, payment of earned academic allowances, implementation of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) have not been addressed,” he said.
Continuing Oyegoke added that the proliferation of state universities, release of withheld salaries, and non-remittance of check-off dues of Unions, which were all contained on December 22, 2020, Memorandum of Action, have not been addressed.
He said ”The claim by the Minister of Labour and Employment that the money allocated for Revitalization of Public Universities had been paid as contained in the MoA of 2020, cannot be true.
He disclosed that the Minister confirmed on Aug. 2, 2021, that the money is still in the custody of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), only awaiting application by the Minister of Education for eventual transfer to the NEEDS Assessment Fund Account.
“That government is working hard to facilitate the release of money by the CBN since January 2021 leaves a sour taste in the mouth.”
On IPPIS versus UTAS, he explained that withholding salaries for months, non-release of EAA, non-payment of check-off dues accruing to the union, in spite of what ASUU has demonstrated, could only be an invitation to another possible cycle of industrial crisis.
“Moreover, UTAS avowed suitability has been demonstrated admirably to the Minister of Education and members of his team, the Honourable Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“And other key stakeholders like Ministries of Labour and Employment; Education, Finance, Office of the Accountant-General, representatives of Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).
“The more the government insists on fulfilling the demands of the integrity test on UTAS, the longer the accompanying pains earlier identified in IPPIS will stay with our members,” he said.
Oyegoke said at a reconciliation meeting between the Federal Government of Nigeria and the leadership of ASUU on Monday, Aug.2, 2021, at the Conference Room of the Minister of Labour and Employment, all contentious matters affecting the outstanding issues as regards the implementation of 2020 FGN/ASUU MoA was discussed.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, on behalf of the Federal Government, promised that a broader government team and the inter-ministerial committee on the draft renegotiated 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement would conclude its work and submit the report to the government by the end of August 2021.
“The meeting concluded with an agreement to reconvene by the end of August 2021 to ascertain the faithfulness of the Federal Government in resolving the outstanding issues.
“We are in the second week of September 2021, nothing positive from the Federal Government so far,” he said.
Others in attendance were: the Chairpersons from the University of Ibadan, Prof. Ayo Akinwole; UNILORIN, Prof. Moyosore Ajao; LAUTECH, Dr Biodun Olaniran, and KWASU, Dr Shehu Salau.