The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have agreed to call off their 8-month-old strike after the Federal Government agreed to give the union to N70bn, The Nation is reporting.
The decision followed a meeting between ASUU and the government team led by Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, in Abuja, on Friday.
The ASUU had on March 26, 2020, embarked on a nationwide strike to demand “revitalisation allowance”, earned academic allowances, renegotiation of the 2009 agreement, visitation panels, among other demands including the payment of lecturers using the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) which the Union kicked against.
Just last week, ASUU told students and their parents not to expect the suspension of its ongoing strike soon. The union’s Abuja Zonal Coordinator, Prof. Theophilus Lagi had accused the federal government of not showing commitment in resolving the issues that necessitated the ongoing industrial action, further stated that they will continue with the strike until the government bows to the union’s demands.
They also accused the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige of turning the wheel of progress backwards by setting ASUU on a collision course with other pressure groups in the university.
He said; “Today, we wish to let Nigerians, especially our students and parents know that there is no hope in sight to ending or suspending the ASUU strike that has lingered for several months as government is yet to show serious commitment towards addressing our core demands. Our members have been advised to seek other legitimate means of survival as the government has not released salaries withheld since February, 2020.
But in order to find a level ground, leaders of the Union and the federal government held a series of meetings which ended in futility. However, on Friday, November 20, 2020, the federal government offered N65 billion to Nigerian universities to address some of the lecturers’ demands.
The government also agreed to pay the lecturers their outstanding salaries using an older payment platform, GIFMIS, which the striking lecturers said was better than the controversial IPPIS.