Why ASUU strike won’t go away yet

The federal government recently reached a deal with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to end its nine-month strike but Nigerian lecturers say they will not return to the classroom yet.

On November 27, after reaching a N70-billion agreement with the federal government, ASUU said the strike, which began in March, was as good as over. But the union now says it is still consulting with stakeholders as well as waiting for the government to do one more thing before lectures can resume.

“We are still consulting; we have not finished consultation, by the end of this week we shall make our report public,” ASUU president Prof Biodun Ogunyemi told Punch on Sunday.

“There are promises government made with dates. Government promised to release salaries of our members.

“The withheld salaries have not been paid and we need to have information on that. Government should not expect us to resume without releasing our salaries.

“I can’t vouch for anything about resumption, but my members will determine that. The only thing I know is that payment of withheld salaries can smoothen the process and that is what we have told the government. It will aid the final decision.

“The government gave a timeline and we are monitoring, once the timeline expires this week, our members will take a final decision. If they pay the withheld salaries, it will make the process easier to handle.”

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