Asuu Conducts Referendum On Lingering Strike
Asuu president Biodun Ogunyemi

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (Asuu) on Tuesday conducted a referendum to decide on suspending its lingering strike.

The national leaders of the union on Monday directed its zonal coordinators to meet and conduct the referendum.

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It was learnt that over 200 members of the University of Ibadan chapter, who attended the congress allegedly voted for the continuation of the strike while a little above 50 voted for the suspension of the strike.

The Punch reports that Chairman of the University of Ibadan Chapter, Dr Deji Omole, said that the congress only conducted a referendum on what the Federal government had offered the union to call off the strike.

Omole stated that the FG promised to include the earned academic allowances in their 2019 salaries.

He also said the FG had decided to release N25bn for university revitalisation while the rest will be released after identifying sources to fund it.

Omole, who said the FG agreed to release additional N5bn to make the earned academic allowances N25bn out of the N105bn being owed lecturers, added that Asuu wanted N30bn.

According to him, the FG has agreed to renegotiate with the union.

The paper also quoted sources at the zonal congress as claiming the majority of the members voted for the continuation of the strike because they doubted government’s sincerity in fulfilling its new promises.

Asuu had in early November commenced a nationwide industrial action following the inability of the Federal Government to respond to its demands.

Concise News reports that the Federal Government has called on the ASUU to call off the strike they embarked upon since November 4.

Malam Adamu Adamu, the Minister of Education revealed during the “Sixth Edition of the Ministerial Press Briefing’’ in Abuja that disbursement was ongoing through the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation.

According to him, the government had resolved all issues and await the academic unions to also call off their strike in the coming days, especially Asuu and Asup.

He stressed that the Federal Government had reached agreement in the following areas: Review of Polytechnic Act; government awaits the transmittal of the amended document by the National Assembly to the President for his assent.

He also says the present government is committed to the revitalisation of facilities in its public tertiary institutions.

Speaking further, the minister notes the government had directed the Minister of Finance to source for additional funding to the tune of N30 billion for the purpose, with particular reference to polytechnics and colleges of education.

Series of meetings between Asuu representatives and the Federal Government has continuously proved futile. It remains to be seen how soon the strike will come to an end going by Malam Adamu’s claim and recent referendum by the lecturers.