By Dayo Adesulu
As the one week warning strike of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) elapses on Tuesday midnight, the Union has said that meeting and consultations are ongoing to ensure that government does the needful.
Speaking with Vanguard yesterday, ASUU-UNILAG Chairman, Dr Laja Odukoya said the one week warning strike of ASUU is still on, adding, ”it will end Tuesday 12 midnight.
According to him, in its quest to avert the looming indefinite strike, ASUU has been having meetings and consultations with some stakeholders to prevail on the Federal Government, saying, ”there is a meeting on the issue in Abuja today,” (yesterday).
Asked what follows if the Federal Government fails to accede to their demands, Odukoya said: ”For now the Union is not thinking of an indefinite strike action, so there is no reason for students to fear.”
”We shall follow up and capitalize on the leads and massive public sympathies and support for our cause during the one week strike to ensure that government do the needful.
”The resort to a total, comprehensive and indefinite strike by ASUU though cannot be wished away should government remain recalcitrant, it not on the bill for now.
”Strike action of whatever nature is an option of the last resort for ASUU. All our strikes historically were imposed and induced by government failures to fulfil agreements.
”We therefore urges all stakeholders, particularly students and parents to insist that government should listen to voice of reason and safe our educational system from avoidable dislocation and crisis.”
You would recall that last week Wednesday, ASUU announced a week warning strike to protest the failure of government to implement the 2009 agreement with the union.
The area of disagreement waiting for redress between the union and government to include payment of fraction do staff entitlement and the denial of staff entitlement in respect of earned academic allowance amounting to about N128 billion, funding of universities for revitalization and the refusal to register the Nigerian Universities Pension Management Company by the National Compensation Commission.
Others include the introduction of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) which according to the Union affects the university autonomy, decrease in budgetary allocation to education and the refusal by government to renegotiate the 2009 agreement which was due for renegotiation since 2012.