THE Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has slammed the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, over comments credited to him that the Federal Government was looking for the union to continue negotiations before the leadership decided to embark on a four-week strike, last Monday.
The union also described the comment as childish not deserving any response.In a chat with Vanguard, yesterday, the National President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, expressed disbelief at the comment.
It is not everything one reacts to but that type of comment does not deserve any response. It is very unfortunate and childish. Does that mean there was no way they were getting across before? We have not turned to ghosts or invisible spirits. It shows the levity with which they treat issues,” he said.
Also speaking on the issue, the Chairman of the University of Ilorin chapter of ASUU, Prof. Moyosore Ajao, said the comment was ridiculous and wondered whether the minister was insinuating that he did not have the means of contacting the leaders of ASUU.He said: “It is preposterous, very ridiculous indeed. Is the minister saying he does not know how to get across to the union’s leadership? He has the contact of the National President and we have chapters all over the country. In all the previous meetings that were held, how were our leaders contacted and informed about them?“Nigerians can now see that the government has started giving excuses for its failure. Who is going to believe such a claim? We would have gone on strike since November last year but for the intervention of some prominent Nigerians and groups and we gave more time to the government to do the needful but it failed to do so.” Ajao added that the monitoring team set up was ensuring total compliance with the strike call.
After the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday, Adamu, in an interview with State House reporters, said the government was looking for leaders of the union to continue negotiations with them before they embarked on strike.
He also stated that the government was surprised that while some of the union’s demands were being met, members went on strike.ASUU on Monday embarked on the strike, saying the government failed to meet some of its demands.
Among the demands are re-negotiation of the 2009 Agreement signed by the two sides, replacement of the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System, IPPIS, with the University Transparency and Accountability System, UTAS, as the accounting platform to be used in the university system, the proliferation of universities by state and federal governments among others.
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