ASUU National President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke
*Says FG fighting it with CONUA, NAMDA registration
By Joseph Erunke,ABUJA
The President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, has again, dismissed the registration of the Congress of University Academics, CONUA and the National Association of Medical Doctors in Academics, NAMDA, saying they were inconsequential and of no effect in the Nigerian university system.
He described the presence of a certificate of recognition to both CONUA and NAMDA, by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, as the government’s plan to silence ASUU, vowing that government would not succeed.
According to him, the two newly registered university academic unions were illegal and such, should not be accorded any recognition in whatever circumstance by anybody.
Reacting to the presentation of certificates to the unions to operate under the nation’s Trade Dispute Act and the Trade Union Act by the minister on Tuesday, Osodeke, who said ASUU was not aware of the development, told Vanguard that the two unions were illegal and have no place to operate in the nation’s university system.
He wondered why the federal government was making the presentation of certificates to the newly registered unions a media affair unlike the registration of existing academic unions some years ago.
“Well, we are not aware of the existence or presentation of operational certificates to the illegal groups. And if the federal government did that, it means they have something to hide, because if they don’t have anything they are hiding or politics they are playing, when other unions were registered, did they call the press or did they make it an issue?
” So it’s like they are trying to fight ASUU but it would never work. We don’t want to make so much noise because we are already in court with the minister, we are in court on the case of registration of those unions. We are already in court, so we don’t want to speak on that.
“We are already in court challenging the creation of such illegal unions in the university system, so we don’t want to be speaking on a case that is already in court,” he said.
Asked if ASUU would accord recognition to the newly registered university academic unions, the ASUU boss said, “Why should we accord recognition to illegal groups?”
” Anyway, we don’t want to talk about it, let the court decide”, he added
Recall that upon presentation of operational certificates to the newly registered university academic unions on Tuesday in Abuja, Ngige said the government had already written to security agencies not only to protect them but also accord them the same right accorded to other university-based unions in the country.