FG Withholds Salaries of Academics, Expects to be Begged – ASUU Says as it Threatens Strike

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FG Withholds Salaries of Academics, Expects to be Begged – ASUU Says it Threatens Strike
Obiajulu Joel Nwolu

The Academic Staff Union of Universities has urged the Federal Government to implement the agreements reached before the suspension of its 10-month strike to avert a further strike by the union.

The union lamented that the government was yet to pay some of its members in several universities, with arrears ranging between three and 14 months being owed.

The President of ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, disclosed these in an interview with SundayPunch.

Speaking on a possible reaction of the union should the government remain intransigent, Osodeke said he would not hesitate to continue where his predecessor, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, stopped.

He said, “It is continuity, we run a collective leadership. So, it’s continuity from where my immediate predecessor stopped. It (the crisis) is not yet over. The government has the opportunity to ensure that the crises are over. It is just to implement those things,”

The ASUU boss said that after developing the University Transparency and Accountability Solution as an alternative to the controversial Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, ASUU members are “bleeding” while people are being paid what pleases the office of the Accountant General of the Federation.

He added, “You know we were on strike till late last year. We reached an agreement on how to implement the outstanding issue with the government. We will expect the government to implement those issues with timelines.

“They have reneged on a number of them in line with the timelines. But, we believe that it is not late; they can still resolve those issues for the peace and development of our universities.

“They cut your salary today, they pay those who they want to pay today, they withdraw those next week; they expect those people to come to Abuja to come and beg them or look for other things for them. So, these cannot continue in a university system.

“As a union, we don’t love strike because we have our children here. Ninety-nine per cent of lecturers in Nigeria have their children in Nigerian universities, unlike the politicians who are actually destroying the system. How many of them have their children in this country?”

This post was written by Obiajulu Joel Nwolu.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.

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