ASUU says they are willing to suspend strike, calls for open meeting with FG
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has assured that it is willing to call off its 7-month-old strike if concrete agreements were reached with the Federal Government.
The lecturers’ union called for an urgent engagement with the government to resolve outstanding issues and even asked for an open meeting so that Nigerians can see what they are discussing.
This was made known by the President of ASUU, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, on Thursday in Abuja while speaking at a National Town Hall Meeting on Tertiary Education tagged: ‘The Locked Gates of our Citadels -A National Emergency.’
Osodeke said, “On all these issues, we have given the government a minimum that we can accept, but they have not responded on the issue of revitilisation, on the issue of earned allowance and on issues that we have all discussed.
”We negotiated and agreed that they should sign and this is very simple, not more than one day.
”On UTAS and IPPIS , we say release the report of the test you did and let’s look at the one who came first and take it as we agreed. So we have given them the minimum we want and we have to come down and they can do it in one day if there is a will.’’
The ASUU President emphasized on the union’s commitment to return to school if the Federal Government puts its proposal on the table, saying that negotiation could be reached if the government was willing.
He said, “If the government loves this country, these children and their parents, then they should come to the table and let us resolve these issues in one day.
“Just as we did in 2014, they should come and ensure that we do that, we can even have the meeting openly so that Nigeria will see what we are discussing.’’
Osodeke expressed sadness over the lingering strike resulting to government taking the union to court.
He said that suing the union was not an option as it would further worsen the situation of the students and tertiary education in the country, adding that if the court forces the lecturers to return to school, they won’t force them to teach with open minds, saying that the students would definitely be at the receiving end.
He commended the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Pro-Chancellors for stepping in to resolve the issues as well as called on parents and students to appeal to the government to do the needful so that the strike would come to an end once and for all, rather than attacking the union.