National bodies of Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) of Education and Associated Institutions have stated that no offer was made by the Federal Government regarding ongoing strike.
SSANU’s strike started with a warning strike of two weeks which commenced on March 27, 2021; while the extension of another two weeks commenced on Sunday, April 10, 2022.
According to the National Vice-President, SSANU, Dr. Abdussobur Salaam, no tangible achievement was recorded at the Federal Government Renegotiation Panel.
Dr. Salaam in an interview with ThePunch expressed that the panel met only once with SSANU; since it was inaugurated on March 7, 2022.
It should be recalled that the committee, which was chaired by the Pro-Chancellor of Alex Ekwueme Federal University Ndufu-Alike, Emeritus Prof. Nimi Briggs, was given three months to conclude the renegotiation with the four university unions and send the report to Federal Government.
The committee’s timeline ended on Monday, June 6; and the committee is expected to submit its report to the Federal Government this week or get an extension.
Speaking about the panel, Dr Salaam said:
Within the three months timeline, SSANU has only had one meeting with the Briggs renegotiation team. The meeting was held on Friday, April 8, 2022. Today, being June 7, makes it exactly two months ago.
At the meeting, nothing tangible was put on the table. No offer was made by the government, particularly on improved conditions of service and welfare of our members.
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The government’s side seems not to be sure of itself and groping in the dark as far as its mandate is concerned.
As of now, we have no reason to express satisfaction because even the paces of the discussions have been too slow. If it has taken two months after the first meeting with SSANU and no meeting has been called, it gives room to doubt the willingness and capacity of the committee to deliver on its mandate.
The union’s demands include the inconsistent issue of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, unpaid earned allowances, and delay in the renegotiation of FGN, NASU, SSANU agreements, and non-payment of minimum wage arrears.
Others include neglect and poor funding of state universities; non-payment of retirement benefits to outgoing members of the union;, and usurpation of the headship of non-teaching units in clear violation of conditions of service and establishment procedures, among others.