by Opeoluwa Quadri
The 2009 agreement with the Federal government which is yet to be implemented by the FG still remain the fundamental reason for the ASUU strike. According to a strike bulletin issued by ASUU’s National Secretariat. The key outstanding issues include:
- Funds for the revitalization of Public Universities (Implementation of Needs Assessment Report)
- Removal of Universities Staff Schools from funding by Government
- Non-Implementation of the provisions of the 2014 Pension Reform Act with respect to Retired Professors and their salaries
- Payment of fractions/Non-payment of salaries
- Non-payment of Earned Academic Allowances, (EAA)
- Non-release of operational License of NUPEMCO
According to ASUU chair, of all the terms contained in the Memorandum of Understanding of 2013, only the 200bn out of a total of N1.3trn of the public universities revitalization (Needs Assessment) fund was made available since then.
The strike action in 2011/2012 compelled the federal government to carry out a nationwide assessment of the needs for addressing the challenges faced by public universities.
The report of the assessment released in July 2012 called for comprehensive intervention and revitalization of the Universities. The report was approved by the government but failed to implement it. called for the 2009 agreement reached between both parties that led ASUU to embark on a six months strike in 2013. It was this non-implementation that led to the strike in 2013.
ASUU Chairman was quoted as saying that “Issues outside Babalakin’s negotiation committee are what we are discussing. We are saying that government did not continue the implementation of the existing issues from 2009 Federal government ASUU agreement. Government have abandoned implementation,”.
Are these various demands difficult to implement? is the usual excuse of no funds a justification to jeopardize the future of the country.
The federal government would need to do more than it is doing to yield to ASUU’s demands. There is no doubting the rot and decay in the education system in Nigeria across all levels.
But do you think the Federal government would yield to ASUU’s demand?