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Minister Of Education, Adamu Speaks On Ending ASUU Strike

Byadmin

Sep 6, 2022

Minister Of Education, Adamu Gives Update On Resolving ASUU Strike

The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, says the Federal Government has done its best to resolve the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Adamu made this during the meeting with Vice-Chancellors and Pro-Chancellors of Federal Universities at the National Universities Commission (NUC) in Abuja on Tuesday.

The minister said he had met with ASUU and other unions on several occasions with possible facts, figures, and with absolute sincerity in order to put an end to the industrial action.

Adamu said the government and ASUU had reached an agreement on the demands of the sticking lecturers, noting that one major issue the two parties could not agree on was the issue of the law on no work, no pay.

He said: “In all, we have been doing, our guide has been the directive of Mr President Muhammadu Buhari, namely, that while the unions should be persuaded to return to work, Government should not repeat the past mistakes of accepting to sign an agreement it will be unable to implement. Government should not, in the guise of resolving current challenges, sow seeds for future disruptions.

“We have done the best that we can in the circumstance. After Inter-ministerial consultations and rounds of hard negotiations with all government agencies, we interacted with the Unions. I personally, gave it all it required to resolve the current challenges. I met the Unions anywhere and everywhere possible with facts, with figures, and with absolute sincerity. For example, I directly met with ASUU leadership in my house, in my office and at the ASUU Secretariat on several different occasions, in addition to other formal engagements going on.

“To be frank with all the unions, especially with ASUU, one major issue over which Government and the Unions could not reach amicable agreement was the issue of the law on “No work, No pay”. In the spirit of sincerity, the Government made it clear that it would not break the law. And on this, I must, openly and once again, thank all the Unions which made the sacrifice of understanding the position of Government on the matter.”

I’ve Been In Personal Anguish and Internal Turmoi – Adamu

The minister said he had been in a dark period of personal anguish and internal turmoil since the strike began on Monday, February 14, 2022.

He, however, said the government and ASUU will continue to discuss until the strike is called off and public universities are reopened.

He said: “For me, the past two weeks have been a very dark period of personal anguish and internal turmoil. I used to deceive myself that in a climate of frankness, and with mutual goodwill, it will fall to my lot to bring an end to the incessant strikes in the education sector. This has not proved possible, or, at least, not as easy, quick and straightforward, as I used to think.

“Distinguished Chairmen, vice-chancellors, I called you today not to share with you my anguish but to share with you the details of what we have done and what remains to be done. And certainly, a lot remains to be done. But for very different reasons, the current positions of the Government and ASUU on the future of negotiations seem to have coincided.

“For me, this is a position I would have wanted us to reach after an amicable resolution of all the issues contained in the 2009 Agreements. It appears that we are running ahead of the negotiations but not for the right reasons. The President of ASUU has been reported to have said the Union would no longer negotiate with the current Federal Government.

“This position must be resisted. Government and ASUU have no option but to continue talking until our universities have reopened their doors to students, who clearly are the principal victims of the seemingly unending strikes. In the circumstances, therefore, all Councils and Senates of our universities are enjoined to rise up to their responsibilities.

“We must, together, continue to work to restore our public universities to where they were in the 60s and 70s. As the most important officers in our university system, Pro-Chancellors and Vice-Chancellors, must demonstrate more commitment to ending the ongoing strike.

“As Chairmen of Councils and Senates – the highest policy and academic bodies in the system – you must consider it your paramount duty to promote policies and actions that will discourage industrial disputes in our campuses. The government will continue to support the physical and academic development of its universities.

“The government will continue to reasonably enhance the working conditions of all university staff, academic and non-teaching. The main challenge, as you are fully aware, is dwindling resources available to address all the concerns of the citizenry. We thank you for your support, understanding and sacrifices.”

This article was originally published on Naija News