We May Go on Nationwide Strikes Soon – ASUU

ASUU Strike 2024: If the Federal Government does not promptly take action and resolve the ongoing contentious issues with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), there is a likelihood of another nationwide strike affecting public universities in the country in the near future.We May Go on Nationwide Strikes Soon - ASUU

Professor Adelaja Odukoya, the Coordinator of ASUU’s Lagos Zone, consisting of seven universities, conveyed this concern during a press conference held at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, on Friday.

The Lagos Zone of ASUU comprises UNILAG, Lagos State University (LASU), Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), Ogun State University (OSU), Lagos University of Science and Technology (LASUST), Lagos University of Education (LASUED), and the Federal University of Agriculture (FUNAAB).

Odukoya, also the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at UNILAG, expressed disappointment in the Federal Government’s lack of serious commitment over the years to bring genuine development to the nation’s public university education. He stressed that the issues causing disputes between ASUU and the government were in the best interest of Nigeria and its people, not solely for ASUU members.

Highlighting unresolved issues, Odukoya mentioned the non-injection of revitalization funds as agreed and appropriated in the 2023 Budget, the proliferation of universities without adequate financial support, prolonged delays in renegotiating the 2009 Agreement, and the persistent use of the “deceptive IPPIS” for emolument payments.

Other issues included continuous delays in the payment of Earned Academic Allowances, the use of Treasury Single Account (TSA) for university operations, non-full payment of eight-month withheld salaries, the non-recall of sacked ASUU officials at LASU five years ago, and the non-release of the university’s white paper on the 2021 Visitation Panel.

Odukoya stressed that these issues had left ASUU with limited options, and the union might resort to the labor-employer negotiation process as a last option to prompt government action. He expressed the fatigue of dealing with the same issues repeatedly, negotiating and reaching agreements that the government consistently fails to uphold.

According to him, the condition of public universities is dire, and political leaders must address the matter seriously. He declared that university workers, particularly lecturers, endure hardships to educate their students, facing hunger and inability to afford healthcare when needed.

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