The Academic Staff Union of Universities has slammed the Federal Government’s handling of its requests negotiations and casual attitude toward the current strike. Today is the beginning of the tenth week of the ASUU rollover strike, which will expire in two weeks.
While appearing on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ last week, Minister of Labour and Employment Chris Ngige advised the union to meet with the Benimi Briggs Committee, adding that the decision to stop ASUU’s strike could only be made by the union.
When questioned about when the ASUU strike will be called off, the minister said, “It depends on ASUU. The ball is in their court. They should go and meet the Benimi Briggs Committee and look at what the committee is doing and make further inputs so that the work can be accelerated.”
However, In a conversation with PUNCH Newspaper correspondent on Sunday, ASUU President Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke said it was disgraceful for Ngige to tell the union to liaise with a third party other than the government. He added that the union might have no choice but to roll over the strike after its expiration if the government is not responsive to her demands.
He said, “The rollover ends in two weeks, and there is no information, nothing new from the FG. They didn’t make any effort to get in touch with us or seek ways of ending the strike. Our members will decide after two weeks what step to take. We will meet. We are not begging them for discussion; they should invite us for any meeting. That’s the way it should be. We are not on strike with Ngige or Briggs but against the government, so why is he saying we should go and meet one committee or one person? We are on strike against a system. Ngige just talks without thinking. Are we on strike with a particular person?”
Remember ASUU initially declared a 1-month warning strike which upon expiration without a headway was extended by two months. The two-month strike is expected to end on the 14th of May, 2021. But with the current situation of things, there’s no hope or indicators that the strike will be called off anytime soon.