Another meeting between Nigerian govt, ASUU deadlocked

Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige
Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige

A meeting between the Nigerian government and university lecturers has ended without a resolution of the nationwide strike called by the union on Monday.

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, began a nationwide strike this week, over demands for improved funding of universities and welfare of lecturers.

An earlier meeting with the government was also unsuccessful. Thursday’s meeting began at exactly 3:42 p.m. in Abuja.

In his opening remark, the Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige, said ASUU did not follow the proper procedure before starting the strike.

“There must be a mandatory letter of 15 days to labour, to education before going on strike,” he said, referring to the ministries of labour and education.

“All agreements are supposed to be domiciled in ministry of labour in order to track implementation as agreement gives room to renegotiation,” Mr. Ngige.

In his response, the president of ASUU, Biodun Ogunyemi, said Mr. Ngige had taken side with his education colleague, Adamu Adamu.

He said ASUU informed relevant ministries before embarking on strike.

“There was a letter dated July 10 to inform the major stakeholders. In the last 10 months, we’ve written 10 letters trying to reach out to relevant stakeholders after suspending the seven days warning strike in November last year,” he said.

“This is not a fresh action and we are open to suggestions.”

The meeting later went into a technical session.

In the end, the ASUU chairman said the strike continued and that the union would revert to the government next week.

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