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Half-Salary: ASUU Puts Off Strike Action After NEC Meeting



ASUU NEC meeting Strike

THE Academic Staff  Union of Universities, ASUU, ended its  Natural Executive Committee, NEC meeting late Monday (yesterday), with a resolution not to embark on another strike, following the payment of half salary to members by the federal government.

“Rather, the union, according to Vanguard source, resolved to wait for the outcome of the intervention of speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila in its faceoff with the government over alleged non-implementation of the 2009 agreement by the latter.

“Although, no member of the body, including the president, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, who attended the meeting held at the University of Abuja campus, where ASUU’s headquarters located, has spoken about the outcome, a source said members resolved not to explore the strike option in getting the government to address the contending issues.

“It was gathered that some members had pushed for declaration of total and comprehensive strike across public universities across the country but majority kicked against the action, saying it was no longer fashionable under the present circumstance.

“Those against the strike argued that it would be wrong to embark on the action again, thus compelling students who had already returned to their various schools, following earlier suspension of the action, to return home.

“The statement released by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, to the effect that government would not pay members full salaries, was said to have further deflated the argument by those who had pushed for strike as a last option.

 “Some members had suggested that since the suspension of the strike was at the speaker’s instance, following his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, it would be wrong to resume action when he (speaker) was still pushing to have the federal government rescind its decisions on no-work,no-pay policy.

A source at the ASUU NEC meeting said:   “Embarking on another round of strike was not considered an option in resolving the current issues with the federal government at the meeting.”

“Asked what really transpired at the meeting, he said:  “You would hear the rest through the appropriate channel.

“”As a body, we have people that speak for us. You will hear from them on what really happened.”

ASUU accuses FG of attempt to turn lecturers to casual workers

However, in a statement after the meeting, ASUU President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, slammed the Federal Government over the payment of half salaries to lecturers in October.

He condemned the ‘pro-rata’ payment to the union’s members and accused the government of an attempt to reduce Nigerian scholars to casual workers.

The action of the union was a display of manifest trust in the judiciary and other institutions and organs of government to always put national interest above all other considerations.

‘This we believe, as a union of thinkers, intellectuals, and patriots, will not only aid the process of amicable resolution of the crisis, but also set the tone for smooth industrial relations between government and Nigerian workers at large,” Osodeke said.

He, however, said the response of the government, especially its ‘pro-rata’ payment of October salaries of academics, portrayed them as daily paid workers.

Osodeke added:  “This is not only an aberration but also a contravention of all-known rules of engagement in any contract of employment for academics the world over.”

According to him, ASUU National Executive Committee, NEC, held on Monday deliberated on the development and noted with dismay that “paying academics on pro-rata basis, like casual workers, is unprecedented in the history of university-oriented labour relations and, therefore, condemned this attempt to reduce Nigerian scholars to casual workers in its entirety”.

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