Executives of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) were absent today, at a meeting called by the Federal Government in order to resolve the indefinite strike action by the union.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, had earlier called for a meeting in Abuja with ASUU leaders, Minister of Education, amongst others in a bid to resolving the lingering strike embarked by the union.
It would be recalled that members of ASUU embarked on indefinite strike on August 13, 2017 following the Federal government’s failure to implement the agreement reached by both parties in November 2016.
ASUU had met with the officials of the Ministry of Education and Labour and Employment on August 17, 2017 where it was agreed that the union consult and revert back to government within a week.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige stated that
“today we are supposed to have a formal meeting with the Minister of Education and other stakeholders in the government side and ASUU”.
“But we had some new development, which made it mandatory, that we roll over this meeting to the next day”.
“Because the government as you know on August 18 gave ASUU an offer, through the Ministry of Education and yesterday when ASUU got back to us, which was late, the meeting has already been scheduled”.
“ASUU had gotten back to government to say that they needed us to deliberate on their counter offer before we can have a formalised meeting”
The Minister noted that with the new development, government has agreed to it by calling for a meeting with stakeholders in the government side on their offer.
“This is what government has decided, thereafter we would speak with ASUU either tomorrow or Thursday whichever is convenient to both parties”
Meanwhile, ASUU’s President, Mr Biodun Ogunyemi, in a statement said that the Union had collated the views of its members submitted to government on August 28, 2017.
“As we await the Federal Government’s action on our letter, we hope that it would not be long before we receive a positive response which will bring an end to the dispute.”
He called on government to speedily address the issues in the best interest of the Nigerian University System and for the overall development of the country.