The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has
described as baseless and speculative, reports that the
strike embarked upon by the union would be called off
National President of ASUU, Dr. Nasir Fagge, said he was surprised to hear that the union was going to call off the strike on Thursday when the issues tabled before government had not been resolved.
ASUU had embarked on an indefinite strike over the
inability of the Federal Government to implement the
2009 agreement it willingly entered into with the union. “There is nothing like that (suspending the strike). I am also surprised to hear people say that we are going to call off the strike,” Faggae said.
“Our members have made it categorically clear what
they want. This meeting we had with government on
Friday at the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, is just exploratory. “We are trying to look at issues holistically and see how
we are going to address them. So assignments were
given to various people that attended the meeting and
the expectation is that we will meet tomorrow (today),
Monday and look at the assignment given and also look at it on Thursday again.
“So, that is why I’m surprised to hear people say that we are going to suspend strike on Thursday. The mandate of our members is very clear. So, we will wait and see what the Monday and Thursday meetings unfold and then we report back to our members.”
Fagge however said convening meetings with members was never a problem as ASUU was in constant consultation with its members, and would convene another meeting after deliberations with the government on Thursday.
“After the meeting, we will decide when to link up with
our members depending upon what is placed on table
on Thursday.” Fagge did not refute the speculation that the union might suspend the strike if the government met up to 50 per cent of the agreement, but he said the union would prefer to get to the bridge before crossing it. Speaking further, Fagge commended the positive disposition of the Joint Senate and House of
Representatives Committee on Education towards the
resolution of the crisis.
“For us, the interaction we have had with the Joint
Committee clearly indicates that they are concerned like other Nigerians. “This is expected of the representatives of people. You see the problem has always been that the executive arm of government does not really hearken to advise that are given on how best to address the problems on education
in this country. “We are convinced as a union that the only thing the government can really do for Nigerians is to avail them of education.
“Once you are able to do that, you will see that people
will be able to generate jobs and they will be able to take care of themselves and contribute to nation building. So that is the argument we are placing on the table”