No plan to strike, ASUU assures Nigerians

University of Abuja
University of Abuja

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has no plans to commence an interim strike on October 2, an official has said.

The Chairman of the University of Abuja chapter of ASUU, Ben Ugheoke, told PREMIUM TIMES on Wednesday that he was wrongly quoted on a planned strike.

The News Agency of Nigeria had quoted Mr. Ugheoke on Tuesday as saying the lecturers’ strike would commence next month.

In an interview with PREMIUM TIMES on Wednesday, Mr. Ugheoke told said he never gave such statement to the NAN reporter.

“A certain reporter in NAN is responsible for this damage,” he said. “As a result of this falsified report, I am facing a panel later tonight from ASUU National body.”

The university don said he had asked for a rebuttal of the story since it was published.

“I have reached out to the NAN reporter and he told me it was a mix-up. He also begged me to save his job,” he said.

In the report widely circulated by Nigerian media, the government news agency quoted the don as saying ASUU was to embark on a one-week warning strike from October 2.

The report also said a full blown strike was planned for November if the federal government failed to meet the demands from its negotiations with ASUU in 2009 and 2013.

The report also highlighted that the federal government was yet to provide funds for the Universities NEEDS Assessment and the facilitation of the registration of the Nigerian Universities Pension Management Company, NUPEMCO.

Speaking on ASUU, Mr. Ugheoke said the union had been sensitizing the public on its stance on national issues and university education.

“We have had zonal press conferences. Abuja zone had its own on August 31, 2016. Although I was present, the event was anchored by the zonal coordinator, Theophilus Lagi,” he told PREMIUM TIMES.

“During the event, we listed all the things we have been trying to get the federal government to look into.

“This we did so that the general public can be made aware of what we are doing and the current state of things between ASUU and the federal government.

“We have never given a date for any form of strike, whether warning strike or full blown strike. There was nothing like a date fixed for a strike,” he said.

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  • kinsly

    PDP reporter trying to heat up the polity by misquoting an ASUU member.

  • Michael

    This is pure guerrilla journalism. What do you to want to achieve with this trash? Rubbish NAN? Must you vomit everything the ASUU chairman told you casually? NAN and other credible media out there have also published ASUU’s refutal without sensationalising it. As a matter of fact, what is in that report that will warrant a reporter losing his job? Were papers not awash recently about pending ASUU strike over FG’s breach of 2009 agreement? As a matter of fact, the said report from NAN has been on social media and some other online platforms. If the reporter accepted it was a mix up, then why are you raising this dust? Most of your stories are from NAN but you wrote this report like someone who is bitter with NAN.

  • Abdul

    But ASUU briefed the press two weeks ago in all its zones threatening to go on strike over certain demands. Is it all politics? I think the concern of Ugheoke is that such definitive statement about strike date should come from the national president not him. If Ugheoke did not issue the statement, then it emanated from somewhere within his institution which he should try to find out. This Premium Times reporter is either naive and amateurish or simply being mischievous by mentioning NAN- bla-bla-bla-bla. A professional would have just said ‘according to reports’ without naming names. It is like deliberately putting a fellow reporter on the spot. Every journalist once in a while gets involved in this type of mix-up or controversy.