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ASUU shelves potential strike over half salary; adopts consultation

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will not resume its industrial action following salary payment dispute with the Federal Government. The union will rather engage in peaceful consultations with stakeholders to resolve the logjam.

In a statement at the end of ASUU’s National Executive Council meeting, which was signed by ASUU’s President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, the union said it would continue to pursue a positive resolution of the avoidable crisis within the ambit of legality without compromising the interests and welfare of Nigerian intellectuals.

ASUU commenced a strike action on 14th February, but suspended it exactly eight months later following a court order and mediation by many groups, including the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.

In the statement, Osodeke also appealed for the understanding of Nigerian students, parents, and other genuinely concerned individuals and groups.

The statement reads: “At an emergency meeting of the ASUU’s National Executive Committee, held on Monday, November 7, 2022, the union deliberated on developments since the suspension of the strike. NEC noted with dismay that paying academics on a ‘pro-rata’ basis, like casual workers, is unprecedented in the history of university-oriented labour relations and therefore condemned this attempt to reduce Nigerian scholars to casual workers in its entirety”.

It added that the NEC commended the membership of ASUU for their perseverance in the face of untold hardship and unwarranted provocation by some notorious agents of the ruling class.

A source within the NEC of ASUU explained to The PUNCH that the union consulted with its legal counsel who encouraged the body to wait for the decision of the court.

“You know the case is still in court, we have not been called back yet. The previous strike was suspended based on court order, if we decide to go on strike, the minister may use that opportunity to say they want to proscribe ASUU. There are lots of court cases on ground already. We need the court to settle it once and for all. Our hands are tied. Only the court can rule. The minister knows this and that is why he is acting this way”, the source said.

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